Interstate Commerce Regulations Case Law

The commerce clause has two aspects: it is an affirmative grant of power to the federal government to regulate interstate commerce, and it restricts the power of states to regulate interstate commerce. (Pacific Merchant Shipping Assn. v. Voss (1995) 12 Cal. 4th 503, 514-515 [48 Cal. Rptr. 2d 582, 907 P.2d 430].) The state restriction aspect is commonly referred to as the dormant Commerce Clause (see Barclays Bank PLC v. Franchise Tax Bd. of Cal. (1994) 512 U.S. 298, 310, fn. 9 [114 S. Ct. 2268, 2276, 129 L. Ed. 2d 244]). State laws that impose discriminatory restrictions on interstate commerce are virtually per se invalid. State laws that regulate activity requiring a national regulatory scheme and impose multiple inconsistent burdens on interstate commerce may also be invalid. (See, e.g., CTS Corp. v. Dynamics Corp. of America (1987) 481 U.S. 69, 88-89 [107 S. Ct. 1637, 1649-1650, 95 L. Ed. 2d 67]; Southern Pacific Co. v. Arizona (1945) 325 U.S. 761, 767 [65 S. Ct. 1515, 1519, 89 L. Ed. 1915]; Bibb v. Navajo Freight Lines (1959) 359 U.S. 520, 529 [79 S. Ct. 962, 967-968, 3 L. Ed. 2d 1003].) State laws that regulate activities outside the state's borders may be invalid; a state may not export its domestic policies into other states and therefore may not enact laws regulating activities occurring outside its borders. (Edgar v. MITE Corp. (1982) 457 U.S. 624, 641-643 [102 S. Ct. 2629, 2640-2641, 73 L. Ed. 2d 269]; Baldwin v. G. A. F. Seelig (1935) 294 U.S. 511, 521 [55 S. Ct. 497, 499-500, 79 L. Ed. 1032, 101 A.L.R. 55].) Finally, a state law that is not invalid under the foregoing tests may be invalid under the balancing test articulated in Pike v. Bruce Church, Inc. (1970) 397 U.S. 137 [90 S. Ct. 844, 25 L. Ed. 2d 174]. (Campeau Corp. v. Federated Dept. Stores (S.D. Ohio 1988) 679 F. Supp. 735, 738-739 [court evaluates statute under Pike test only if statute first passes tests that prohibit discriminatory statutes and statutes imposing inconsistent burdens].) Under Pike, the court balances the burden placed on interstate commerce by the state law against the local benefit derived from the state law ( Pike, supra, at p. 142 [90 S. Ct. at p. 847]) and the state law is invalid if the burden on interstate commerce is clearly excessive compared to the putative local benefit. (Ibid.)