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Wirtz v. Baldor Elec. Co. - 337 F.2d 518 (D.C. Cir. 1963)

Rule:

The Walsh-Healey Act provides that notwithstanding any provision of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 U.S.C.S. § 1003, such Act shall be applicable in the administration of the APA §§ 1 to 5 and 7 to 9, and that all wage determinations under the APA § 1(b) shall be made on the record after opportunity for a hearing. Review of any such wage determination may be had within ninety days after such determination is made by any person adversely affected or aggrieved thereby, who shall be deemed to include any manufacturer of, or regular dealer in, materials, supplies, articles or equipment purchased or to be purchased by the Government from any source, who is in any industry to which such wage determination is applicable pursuant to 41 U.S.C.S. § 10.

Facts:

Appellees Bodine Electric Company, Lamb Electric, a Division of Ametek, Inc., and Peerless Electric Division of H. K. Porter Company, Inc., were alleged to be paying minimum wages equal to or greater than those set by the Secretary of Labor. Upon the Secretary’s determination of the minimum wage for industry pursuant to the Walsh-Healey Act, 41 U.S.C.S, the appellees instituted a claim seeking to set aside the Secretary’s minimum wage determination alleging violation of the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C.S. § 1006(c). The United States District Court for the District of Columbia awarded judgment in favor of appellees, and the secretary appealed, contending that his determination was proper, and that appellees lacked standing to institute the action. On the other hand, the appellees asserted that the decision of the Secretary concerning the determination of minimum wage was unsupported by evidence.

Issue:

Was the Secretary of Labor’s determination of minimum wage unsupported by evidence? Conversely, did the appellees lack standing, as argued by the Secretary?

Answer:

Yes, as regards the first question. For the second question, not yet determined.

Conclusion:

The Court held that the decision of the Secretary of Labor as regards the minimum wage was unsupported by evidence. As such, the court determined that the documents supporting the secretary's decision must be made available to the opposing party to the extent that they were necessary for the purpose of rebuttal, and denial of the statutory access was improper. On the issue of the appellees’ standing, the court remanded it to the appellate court for proper determination. It, however held that if one party had standing, the determination of the Secretary should be enjoined.

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