United States District Court, District of Columbia
CHRISTOPHER R. COOPER UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE.
in 2016, the District of Columbia's Department of
For-Hire Vehicles adopted a series of rules that require
taxicab operators to transit ion fro m tradit ional analog
metering systems to newer systems called “digital
taxicab solutions, ” or “DTS.” Designed to
resemble popular ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft,
DTS systems run on mobile devices and calculate fares using
Cab, Inc., a taxicab operator in the District, along with its
owner, filed a complaint and a motion for a temporary
restraining order late last December seeking to halt the DTS
requirement from going into effect at the beginning of the
new year. They claimed that the Department's rules
violated several federal constitutional provisions and that
its rulemaking process violated the District of Columbia
Administrative Procedure Act (“D.C. APA”). After
a hearing, the Court denied the plaintiffs' motion,
finding that they were unlikely to succeed on any of their
federal constitutional claims and, in turn, that the Court
would unlikely exercise supplemental jurisdiction over their
D.C. APA claim. Memo. Op. at 16, 18-19 (ECF No. 14).
District has now moved to dismiss this case. It relies
primarily on this Court's analysis in its decision
denying the plaintiffs' motion for a temporary
restraining order. The plaintiffs' opposition mostly
reiterates the arguments made in its previous motion and,
more generally, it emphasizes the difference between the
preliminary injunction standard (whether the plaintiffs have
shown a likelihood of success on the merits) and the standard
governing dismissal for failure to state a claim (whether the
facts as stated in the complaint plausibly entitle the
plaintiff to relief). Even if the Court found little
likelihood of success on the merits of their claims, the
plaintiffs argue, the facts stated in their complaint
establish constitutional violations.
Court disagrees. While of course the standards governing
preliminary relief and dismissal are different, the Court for
essentially the same reasons stated in its previous order
finds that the plaintiffs have not stated a federal claim on
which relief can be granted.
Court will not fully repeat its previous analysis here but,
to summarize: On the plaintiffs' due process claim, even
assuming that they were deprived of a cognizable property
interest in the value of their taxi business or in their
contract with Creative Mobile Technologies, the
notice-and-comment process that the District afforded, as
detailed in the complaint, was constitutionally adequate.
See Bi-Metallic Inv. Co. v. State Bd. of
Equalization, 239 U.S. 441, 445 (1915); Pickus v.
U.S. Bd. of Parole, 543 F.2d 240, 244 (D.C. Cir. 1976).
Nor have the plaintiffs stated a claim under the Contract
Clause of Article I. Even assuming that they could establish
that the Department's regulations substantially impaired
their contractual relationship, they have not plausibly
asserted that the regulations were not “reasonable and
necessary to serve an important public purpose, ” as is
required to show that an impairment of contract violates the
Contract Clause. U.S. Trust Co. v. New Jersey, 431
U.S. 1, 25 (1977); see also Keystone Bituminous Coal
Ass'n v. DeBenedictis, 480 U.S. 470, 505 (1987)
(“[W]e have repeatedly held that unless the State is
itself a contracting party, courts should properly defer to
legislative judgment as to the necessity and reasonableness
of a particular measure.” (internal quotation
omitted)); United Auto., Aerospace, Agr. Implement
Workers of Am. Int'l Union v. Fortuno, 633 F.3d 37,
43 (1st Cir. 2011) (explaining that “lack of
reasonableness or necessity to an important governmental
purpose” is one of the two essential elements of a
Contract Clause claim).
leaves the plaintiffs' claim under the D.C.
APA.Generally, when all of a plaintiff s
federal claims are dismissed before trial, a federal court
should decline to exercise supplemental jurisdiction over any
remaining (non-federal) claims. 28 U.S.C. § 1367(c)(3)
(allowing district court to decline supplemental jurisdiction
if the court “has dismissed all claims over which it
has original jurisdiction”); see also United Mine
Workers of Am. v. Gibbs, 383 U.S. 715, 726 (1966)
(“Certainly, if the federal claims are dismissed before
trial . . . the state claims should be dismissed as
well.”); Robinson v. Palmer, 841 F.2d 1151,
1157 (D.C. Cir. 1988) (endorsing district court's refusal
of supplemental jurisdiction over claim under the D.C. APA
and its suggestion that D.C. local courts were preferable
forum for that claim). Thus, because the Court is dismissing
all of the plaintiffs' federal claims, it will dismiss
their D.C. APA claim as well.
Court will therefore dismiss the plaintiffs' complaint
pursuant to Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6). A
separate Order accompanies this Memorandum Opinion.
 In its previous decision, the Court
evaluated the plaintiffs' likelihood of succeeding under
the Takings Clause of the Fifth Amendment and under the
Dormant Commerce Clause. It did so because the plaintiffs
raised these theories in their motion for a temporary
restraining order. But as the District points out, these
claims appear nowhere in the complaint, ...