Interstate Commerce Commission

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Interstate Commerce Commission

(ICC), former independent agency of the U.S. government, established in 1887; it was charged with regulating the economics and services of specified carriers engaged in transportation between states. Surface transportation under the ICC's jurisdiction included railroads, trucking companies, bus lines, freight forwarders, water carriers, oil pipelines, transportation brokers, and express agencies.

The ICC, the first regulatory commission in U.S. history, was established as a result of mounting public indignation in the 1880s against railroad malpractices and abuses (see Granger movementGranger movement,
American agrarian movement taking its name from the National Grange of the Patrons of Husbandry, an organization founded in 1867 by Oliver H. Kelley and six associates. Its local units were called granges and its members grangers.
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), but until President Theodore RooseveltRoosevelt, Theodore,
1858–1919, 26th President of the United States (1901–9), b. New York City. Early Life and Political Posts

Of a prosperous and distinguished family, Theodore Roosevelt was educated by private tutors and traveled widely.
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, the ICC's effectiveness was limited by the failure of Congress to give it enforcement power, by the Supreme Court's interpretation of its powers, and by the vague language of its enabling act. Beginning with the Hepburn Act (1906), the ICC's jurisdiction was gradually extended beyond railroads to all common carriers except airplanes by 1940. Its enforcement powers to set rates were also progressively extended, through statute and broadened Supreme Court interpretations of the commerce clause of the Constitution, as were its investigative powers for determining fair rates of return on which to base rates. In addition, the ICC was given the task of consolidating railroad systems and managing labor disputes in interstate transport. In the 1950s and 60s the ICC enforced U.S. Supreme Court rulings that required the desegregation of passenger terminal facilities.

The ICC's safety functions were transferred to the Dept. of Transportation when that department was created in 1966; the ICC retained its rate-making and regulatory functions. However, in consonance with the deregulatory movement, the ICC's powers over rates and routes in rails and trucking were curtailed in 1980 by the Staggers Rail Act and Motor Carriers Act. Most ICC control over interstate trucking was abandoned in 1994, and the agency was terminated at the end of 1995. Many of its remaining functions were transferred to the new National Surface Transportation Board.

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References in periodicals archive ?
Also, the Act established the Interstate Commerce Commission as a regulatory agency to implement the law.
Although the creation of the Interstate Commerce Commission in 1887 provided a potential administrative regulatory model for antitrust legislation, very little consideration was given in 1890 to an administrative model that might preempt state law.
After meeting with industry officials, the White House had concluded that consolidating the economic regulatory functions of the Civil Aeronautics Board, Interstate Commerce Commission, and the Federal Maritime Administration in the new department would be highly controversial.
Morawetz asserted that he believed that the Sherman Act was beyond repair because of its imprecise language but he believed it "should remain on the statute books as it stands." What was needed, he argued, was new "legislation for the regulation of corporations and trusts" and he called for a "national commission similar to the Interstate Commerce Commission ...
The Interstate Commerce Commission became the first agency of "the fourth branch of government"--a branch of government that unconstitutionally made and enforced its own laws, using federal power.
the Interstate Commerce Commission, representing the transit cartels.
Abstract: On January 26, 1983, the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) announced that it would require all railroads under its regulatory jurisdiction to change from Retirement-Replacement-Betterment (RRB) accounting, to a more theoretically sound depreciation accounting for matching revenues and expenses.
"In the 1950s, Congressman Charles Tobey enlisted Benedict Fitzgerald, an investigator for the Interstate Commerce Commission, to investigate allegations of conspiracy* and monopolistic practices on the part of orthodox medicine.
The additional levels of bureaucracy imposed upon inland marine carriers--including facets of the MTSA and the Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act of 1995--also subject the insurer to additional scrutiny.
* The Interstate Commerce Commission (created in 1887) seeks to set up a uniform system of accounting for the railroads.
In the same year, the Interstate Commerce Commission was strengthened to enable it to curb the power of the railroads.

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