The opinion of the court was delivered by: SIRICA
The Court has consolidated these two suits for decision of the issues common to them. The first, District of Columbia v. Landmark Services, Inc., C.A. No. 75-1798, was originally brought by the District of Columbia and Mayor Washington against Landmark Services, Inc. ("Landmark") in D.C. Superior Court, but the defendant had it removed here under 28 U.S.C. § 1442(a)(1) (1970). Originally, they sought a declaratory judgment and an injunction against Landmark to prevent it from operating a particular tour service until the corporation complied with certain licensing and registration requirements of the D.C. Code. The service that the District of Columbia claimed Landmark was operating illegally was an interpretive transportation service -- that is, a bus tour with vocal commentary along the way. It ran on a circuit from the parking lot of Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium partly along city streets to various points of interest for tourists on the Mall and back again. The parking lot is located about two miles east of the Capitol. The Mall, a federal park, extends generally from the Capitol west past the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial and is bordered by museums and art galleries.
The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Commission ("WMATC") have been allowed to intervene to support the plaintiffs.
Landmark, the defendant, has contracted with the Secretary of the Interior ("Secretary") to provide the interpretive transportation service at issue in this case. Its sole defense has been that 40 U.S.C. § 804 (Supp. 1974) gives exclusive authority to the Secretary to regulate this service and that therefore the firm is immune from the enforcement of these local regulations against it.
The second suit, United States v. District of Columbia, C.A. No. 75-2148, was brought because of the first suit. Its entire purpose and effect have been to make the federal government an intervenor-defendant in that suit; therefore, the Court will treat the United States as such and decide the matter accordingly.
The relevant facts are not in dispute. The federal government and Landmark on one side and the D.C. government on the other have each sought judgment in their favor. However, before addressing the merits of these motions, the Court must first decide whether the issues raised are still ripe for adjudication. On January 27, 1976, while both these suits were pending, the acting director of the National Capital Parks did give public notice that the service in controversy here had been suspended because relatively few people were using it. 41 Fed. Reg. 3887-88 (1976). But the director also said at that time that he intends to begin service again if the demand becomes great enough. Since the number of visitors coming to the Washington area generally increases in the spring and summer, and since the number is especially likely to increase substantially in this Bicentennial year, the Court concludes that, although an injunction may no longer be appropriate, the controversy still has sufficient life to support jurisdiction for purposes of a declaratory judgment. Therefore, the Court must consider the merits of the motions made.
The District of Columbia claims that Landmark must comply with the following D.C. regulations if it is to operate interpretive transportation service from the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium parking lot to the Mall and back again:
(1) D.C. Code § 40-102 (1973) (vehicle registration);
(2) D.C. Code § 40-201 et seq. (1973) (vehicle inspection);
(3) D.C. Code § 47-2338 (1973) (licensing of tour guides);
(4) D.C. Code § 29-933 (1973) (certification and filing of annual reports as a foreign corporation).