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Southern Pac. Co. v. State Corp. Commission

Supreme Court of Arizona

October 6, 1931

SOUTHERN PACIFIC COMPANY, a Corporation, Appellant,
v.
THE CORPORATION COMMISSION OF THE STATE OF ARIZONA, LOREN VAUGHN, AMOS A. BETTS and W. D. CLAYPOOL, as Members of and Constituting Said Commission, Appellees

APPEAL from a judgment of the Superior Court of the County of Maricopa. A. S. Gibbons, Judge. Reversed and remanded, with directions to enter judgment for appellant.

Mr. Del W. Harrington and Messrs. Baker & Whitney, for Appellant.

Mr. K. Berry Peterson, Attorney General (Messrs. Sutter & Gentry, of Counsel), for Appelles.

OPINION

Page 519

[39 Ariz. 2] ROSS, J.

This is an appeal by the Southern Pacific Company from a judgment and order of the superior court of Maricopa county affirming and approving an order and decision of the Corporation Commission directing said appellant to refund to the Shattuck-Denn Mining Corporation certain switching charges.

The action in the superior court and this appeal are provided for in section 720 of the Revised Code of 1928.

On December 23, 1924, an application of the Shattuck-Arizona Copper Company was filed with the Corporation Commission alleging that the switching charges of the El Paso & Southwestern Railroad Company and the Southern Pacific Company were unjust, unreasonable, and excessive. Thereafter a hearing was had upon such application, at which time the Shattuck-Denn Mining Corporation had succeeded to the rights of the Shattuck-Arizona Copper Company and the Denn-Arizona Copper Company, also a shipper; and the Southern Pacific Company had acquired the control of the El Paso & Southwestern Railroad Company.

Herein we shall refer to the Southern Pacific Company as the carrier and the Shattuck-Denn Mining Corporation as the complainant.

[39 Ariz. 3] The commission found it unnecessary to determine whether the charges were unjust, unreasonable or excessive, but held the question was one of tariff interpretation.

On July 1, 1922, the El Paso & Southwestern Railroad Company (predecessor of appellant) filed with the Corporation Commission a tariff schedule in which the various switching services the carrier performed were classified and defined as follows:

"Intra-plant switching: A switching movement from one track to another within the same plant or industry.

"Intra-terminal switching: A switching movement (other than intra-plant switching) from one track to another of the same road within the switching limits of one station or industrial switching district.

"Inter-terminal switching: A switching movement from a track of one road to a track of another road when both tracks are within the switching limits of the same station or industrial switching district."

The rate for intra-plant switching was fixed at $3.60 per car movement and for intra-terminal and inter-terminal at $7.20 per car movement.

The carrier had charged the complainant and its predecessors for intra-terminal movements. The commission held the movements were intra-plant, and ordered the carrier to refund ...


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