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05/13/60 Minneapolis Gas Company Et v. Federal Power Commission

UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA CIRCUIT


May 13, 1960

MINNEAPOLIS GAS COMPANY ET AL., PETITIONERS

v.

FEDERAL POWER COMMISSION, RESPONDENT, CITY OF DULUTH, MINNESOTA, SUPERIOR WATER, LIGHT AND POWER COMPANY, MINNESOTA VALLEY NATURAL GAS COMPANY, NORTHERN NATURAL GAS

Before EDGERTON, DANAHER, and BURGER, Circuit Judges.

UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA CIRCUIT. 1960.CDC.63

Company, Iowa Public Service Company, Iowa Power and Light

Company, Northwestern Public Service Company, State of

Minnesota, Willmar Gas Company, Inc., Intervenors.

May 13, 1960. Decided; As Amended August 19, 1960.

Petition for Rehearing Denied June 10, 1960.

DECISION OF THE COURT DELIVERED BY THE HONORABLE JUDGE EDGERTON

EDGERTON, Circuit Judge.

Petitioners seek review of the Federal Power Commission's opinion and order of July 31, 1959, and its order of September 18, 1959, granting certificates of public convenience and necessity under ยง 7(c) of the Natural Gas Act, 52 Stat. 825, as amended, 15 U.S.C.A. 717f(c). The orders authorize Northern Natural Gas Company to extend its pipelines and bring natural gas service to more than 300 communities in Nebraska, South Dakota, Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. 22 FPC 164, 523.

Petitioners are local gas distributors that buy from Northern. They object to the Commission's orders because, on the basis of the rates now charged Northern's customers, the new service will not yield to Northern in the first three years as high a percentage of profit as the present service, and may therefore tend to keep up the rates which petitioners pay to Northern.

The various parts of a public utility's system need not and cannot be equally profitable. Puget Sound Traction, Light & Power Co. v. Reynolds, 244 U.S. 574, 581, 37 S. Ct. 705, 61 L. Ed. 1325. The record supports the Commission's finding that Northern's project will be economically "feasible particularly after . . . provisions . . . for customers who may not pay their proper share of Northern's cost of service." Service on certain lines is authorized only on condition that the distributors on those lines make certain contributions to initial costs. The record also supports the Commission's conclusion that the new service is required by the public convenience and necessity. The Commission properly weighed the interests that will be served against those that will be injured and did not strike an arbitrary balance. Cf. Democrat Printing Co. v. Federal Communications Commission, 91 U.S.App.D.C. 72, 202 F.2d 298.

Affirmed.

19600513

© 2002 VersusLaw Inc.



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