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United Gas Pipe Line Co. v. Memphis Gas Div., 358 U.S. 103 (1958)

United Gas Pipe Line Co. v. Memphis Light, Gas & Water Division

No. 23

Argued October 20-21, 1958

Decided December 8, 1958*

358 U.S. 103


A natural gas pipeline company regulated under the Natural Gas Act supplies gas to a number of distributing companies under long-term service agreements filed with the Federal Power Commission which were construed by the Commission as obligating the purchasers to pay for the gas during the terms of the agreements not at a single specified rate, but at the pipeline company's "going" rates as established from time to time in accordance with the procedures prescribed by the Act.

Held: under agreements so providing, nothing in the Natural Gas Act prevents the pipeline company, without further agreement with the purchasers, from changing its rates by filing new schedules under § 4(d) of the Act, subject to review by the Commission under § 4(e). Pp. 358 U. S. 104-116.

(a) United Gas Pipe Line Co. v. Mobile Gas Service Corp., 350 U. S. 332, distinguished. Pp. 358 U. S. 109-111.

(b) The procedures prescribed by § 4(d) and § 4(e) are not limited to instances where the parties have mutually agreed upon specific new rates. Pp. 358 U. S. 111-114.

(c) The Commission correctly determined the meaning of the service agreements here involved. Pp. 358 U. S. 114-115.

(d) Nothing in the agreements here involved, as interpreted to permit the pipeline company to change its rates under § 4(d) and § 4(e) procedures, is hostile to any of the provisions or purposes of the Act. P. 358 U. S. 115.

102 U.S.App.D.C. 77, 250 F.2d 402, reversed.

Page 358 U. S. 104

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