Read Case Problem 1-2 (pg. 31)
Professional Business Response Format
(Facts) The State of Georgia has enacted a law requiring contoured rear-fender mud flaps on all trucks and trailers operating within Georgia. Thirty-five other states allow straight mud flaps and Florida requires straight mud flaps.
(Question(s) Will truckers operating in or through Georgia have to comply with the Georgia statute? Or, does the Georgia law violate the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution because it substantially impacts interstate commerce?
(Applicable Law(s) or Legal Principle(s) The Commerce Clause is found in Article. I, Section. 8 of the U. S. Constitution and states that “Congress has the power “to regulate Commerce among the several States.” Trucks carrying goods is “commerce” and trucks that travel between states are in “interstate commerce.” Section 8 also states that Congress has the power “To make all laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing Powers”. In court decisions, the U. S. Supreme Court has interpreted the Commerce Clause to include any activity that “substantially affects” interstate commerce.
(Discussion) The Georgia law seems to impact truckers that drive through Georgia without contoured mud flaps. In order to comply with the Georgia law, the truckers would have to stop and change mud flaps before entering Georgia. If they were going to Florida, they would have to stop again at the Georgia-Florida border to change to straight mud flaps. This could substantially affect interstate commerce by slowing it down and costing businesses more to ship goods.
An alternate argument is that Georgia has the right to enact that law under Georgia’s “police powers” which are state laws that protect the safety of its citizens. A report said that contoured flaps were safer.
(Conclusion) Since the Commerce Clause gives the Federal