Foree v. Crown Central Petroleum Corporation, 4619

Citation417 S.W.2d 499
Decision Date06 July 1967
Docket NumberNo. 4619,4619
PartiesR. L. FOREE et al., Appellants, v. CROWN CENTRAL PETROLEUM CORPORATION et al., Appellees. . Waco
CourtTexas Court of Appeals

Billy E. Lee, Houston, John Davenport, James N. Ludlum and James Ludlum, Jr., Austin, H. Clayton May, Dallas, for appellants.

Vinson, Elkins, Weems & Searls, Raybourne Thompson, W. H. Drushel, Jr., Houston, Cable & McDaniel, John S. McDaniel, Baltimore, Md., for appellees.

OPINION

WILSON, Justice.

Summary take-nothing judgment was rendered against appellants, who summarize the allegations in their suit for damages against appellees as follows:

(1) Between October 15, 1959 and November 1, 1964, appellee Crown Central Pipe Line Company owned pipeline facilities and the Teague Receiving Station in the Sojourner Sand Unit Field immediately adjacent to the Haskell County Regular Field where appellants' production was located. (2) Appellee Crown Central Petroleum Corporation was a purchaser of crude oil and a producer of crude oil in both of these fields. (3) Appellee Crown Central Pipe Line Company is a common carrier and appellee Crown Central Petroleum Corporation is a common purchaser as those terms are defined in Title 102, Vernon's Ann.Civ.St. (4) Appellees discriminated in favor of their own production and against that of appellants by purchasing their own crude oil at the lease tank batteries while purchasing appellants' crude oil at the Teague Receiving Station, the effect of which was to require appellants to transport their oil by truck from their lease tanks to the Teague Station at appellants' expense. (5) Appellees connected their wells in the Sojourner Sand Unit Field by pipeline ot the Teague Receiving Station but refused to so connect the wells of appellants, even when ordered to do so by the Railroad Commission of Texas. (6) Appellants' damages are 11 cents per barrel which they allege was the cost to them for truck transportation of their oil production to the Teague Receiving Station, which costs would not have been required if the appellee Crown Companies had treated the appellants' oil production in the same manner as appellees treated their own oil production. (7) The Railroad Commission of Texas ordered appellees to connect appellants' lease tank batteries by pipeline in a unanimous order issued on February 21, 1962, but appellees did not comply with such order. Appellants secured compliance with such order on November 1, 1964. (8) The discrimination above alleged is in violation of the statutes contained in Title 102, V.C.S., particularly Articles 6045, 6048, and Section 8 of Article 6049a thereof.

Appellees contend the summary judgment was proper because the Railroad Commission of Texas has exclusive original jurisdiction of appellants' complaints, and there is no existing Railroad Commission order finding discrimination on which appellants may base their suit .

Art. 6049a, Vernon's Ann.Civ.Stat., the 'Common Purchaser Act,' empowers the Railroad Commission to establish and enforce rules governing the character of facilities to be furnished by operators of public crude petroleum storage facilities in connection with pipelines, and governing gathering and transportation of petroleum; to require common carriers to extend or enlarge their pipelines if it is found to be reasonable and required under prescribed conditions; and to prevent discrimination in purchases. Provision is made for notices and hearing. For violation of regulations and orders a monetary penalty is provided, one-half of which may be recovered for the use of any person unlawfully discriminated against . Sec. 11c of the statute provides that 'a cause of action for damages' in case of discrimination 'shall lie against said common purchaser' in any court of...

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1 cases
  • Foree v. Crown Central Petroleum Corp., B--460
    • United States
    • Texas Supreme Court
    • 19 Junio 1968
    ...granted respondents' motion for summary judgment and rendered judgment that plaintiffs take nothing. The court of civil appeals affirmed. 417 S.W.2d 499. We reverse the judgments of both courts and remand the cause to the trial The instant case represents one phase of rather lengthy litigat......

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