Hughes v. Alexandria Scrap Corp.
|Hughes v. Alexandria Scrap Corp.|
|Argued January 21, 1976|
Decided June 24, 1976
|Full case name||Harry R. Hughes, Secretary of Transportation of Maryland, et al.|
v. Alexandria Scrap Corporation
|Citations||426 U.S. 794 (more)|
|Prior||Alexandria Scrap Corp. v. Hughes, 391 F. Supp. 46 (D. Md. 1975); probable jurisdiction noted, 423 U.S. 819 (1975).|
|The Maryland statute does not constitute an impermissible burden on interstate commerce in violation of the Commerce Clause.|
|Majority||Powell, joined by Burger, Stewart, Blacknum, Rehnquist, Stevens|
|Dissent||Brennan, joined by White, Marshall|
Hughes v. Alexandria Scrap Corp., 426 U.S. 794 (1976), was a case argued before the Supreme Court of the United States. Maryland created a program that, 1) purchased junked cars, 2) paid a bounty for those with Maryland license plates and, 3) imposed more stringent documentation requirements on out-of-state processors, in an effort to reduce the number of abandoned cars in Maryland.
The Issue before the Court is whether such a program violates the Dormant Commerce Clause—essentially, whether Maryland could Constitutionally discriminate or burden interstate commerce by imposing more stringent documentation requirements on out-of-state processors or favoring in-state car dealerships when they purchase junk cars.
Unlike previous Dormant Commerce Clause cases, Maryland was acting like a market participant (as opposed to a state regulator). In such instances, the Court determined that a state actor can favor its own citizens over the foreign citizens.
This case created the "market participant" exception to the general restrictions on states imposed by the Dormant Commerce Clause.