MPA Entitled to Sovereign Immunity in FMC Action

Tuesday, August 17, 2004
The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) ruled that the Maryland Port Authority is entitled to sovereign immunity from the regulatory adjudication of a privately-filed Shipping Act complaint. In the instant case, a marine terminal company filed an action with the FMC alleging that the port authority was violating the Shipping Act of 1984 in its negotiations with the company on lease terms. In this long-running action, the FMC found the port authority to be an arm of the State of Maryland and thus immune from being brought before an adjudicatory board of the federal government by a private party. Ceres Marine Terminals, Inc. v. Maryland Port Authority, Docket No. 94-01 (HK Law)
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