U.S. District Court Dismisses NYSA's Complaint Against Commission's IPSIG Program
March 18, 2011
On March 18, 2011, the Honorable Jose L. Linares, United States District Judge for the District of New Jersey, dismissed the Amended Complaint filed by the New York Shipping Association (NYSA) against the Commission, challenging the Commission's Independent Private Sector Inspector General (IPSIG) Program. The Court found that NYSA failed to show that the mere existence of the Commission's IPSIG program threatens any imminent economic injury to NYSA's members, or any imminent injury to the licensing status of its members. Specifically, NYSA did not show that the IPSIG program imposes, or threatens to impose, any mandatory additional cost on the stevedoring companies. In addition, NYSA did not show that the IPSIG program increases the statutory assessments beyond the two percent ceiling provided by the Waterfront Commission Act, and did not contradict the Commission's statements that the IPSIGs would be funded only by those companies who choose to retain such services. Moreover, NYSA failed to demonstrate that the Commission's extensive administrative and judicial appeals process has been altered in any way by the IPSIG program. Instead, the Court observed that the IPSIG program appears to add an alternative to that process. Notably, Judge Linares emphasized that, "[i]ndeed, whether any member will ever be threatened with the loss of its license is determined not by the existence of the IPSIG program, but by a finding by the Commission that the company lacks the 'good character and integrity' required for licensure...At bottom, the character and integrity of a stevedoring company lies within the control of the company itself."
Accordingly, the Court dismissed NYSA's Amended Complaint. A complete copy of the Court's Opinion is attached.
Download Court's Opinion in PDF: