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APA: Distinction Between Rulemaking and Adjudication
Terms in this set (4)
Londoner v. City and County of Denver
Summary: The constitution requires due process of law in adjudication context.
Facts: there as an assessment tax by Denver on property owners for their share of the costs of a certain road an improvements. The city charter permitted the city to allocate those costs in the form of a tax among properties who benefited from the improvements. The property owners claimed that due process required the city to hold a hearing before setting the tax, where as the city had only permitted them to submit their objections in writing.
Issue: did due process require something more than allowing the citizens to submit written complaints?
Holding: Yes it did because this was an adjudication.
Rule: Though there need not be a trial, in the context of adjudication, there must be an opportunity for some kind of oral evidentiary hearing, however informal. the individual must have notice of this hearing.
Bi-metallic Investment co v. state board of equalization
Summary: No need for due process of law in rule making.
Facts: There was an order by state agencies requiring the assessor of Denver to increase the valuation of ALL taxable property in that county by 40 percent. A property owner complained that he had been provided no opportunity for hearing.
Issue: did gov need to provide a hearing in this context?
Holding: NO, because it was rule making, not adjudication. There was recourse through political process.
Reasoning: Where a rule of conduct applies to "more than a few people," it is impracticable that everyone should have a direct voice in its adoption. It is impractical to provide a hearing for everyone who might be affected by such a rule.
NOTE: The APA provides that ratemaking for a single firm is rulemaking, even though it looks really more like adjudicatino under APA. Due process may still apply?
Basic differnece between rulemaking and adjudication
Rule making is a generalized determination; adjudication is an individualized determination.
APA's Basis for distinguishing rulemaking from adjudication
NOTE: Text of APA attempts to distinguish between rulemaking and adjudication on DIFFERENT GROUNDS than those identified in Londoner and Bi-Metalic. BUT in reality, courts fall back on the Londoner-Bi-Metallic distinction when determining if an agency act is rulemaking or adjudication: basically, was it generalized (rulemaking) or was it individualized (adjudication).
BIGGEST DIVERGENCE: Under APA ratemaking is always rulemaking, whereas if it were a ratemaking for a single entity, Londoner-Bi-metallic would suggest that it should be adjudication.
Four interrelated provisions of section 551:
551(4) Defines rule as "an agency statement of general or particular applicability and future effect designed to implement, interpret, or prescribe law or policy."
551(6): Orders = all final agency action that does not fit into 551(4)'s definition of a rule.
Rule making = "agency process for formulating, amending, or repealing a rule" (APA 551(5))
Adjudication= process for the formulation of an "order." 551(7)
NOTE: adjudication is the catchall default. 551(6)
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