CMCA ANTI-TRUST Guidelines

 

GENERAL

 

U.S. antitrust laws and the court decisions that have interpreted them to not clearly define all antitrust violations.  The resolution of an antitrust claim will often turn on whether the enhancement of competition outweighs any countervailing anticompetitive effects. These are factual issues which may not be able to be resolved except by a fact finder in a court of law. There are, however, certain activities which are clearly prohibited by Federal Law

 

The provisions below clearly set out CMCA policies and prohibited activities.  CMCA employees and members should refrain from the prohibited activities in all CMCA meetings and in other related communications. Even aside from the clearly prohibited activities, there may be other actions which could violate the antitrust laws which are not expressly dealt with herein. In considering and discussing market prices, triggers, and other matters, so long as the action serves to promote or enhance competition, there should be little likelihood of an antitrust problem.

 

Questions or requests for the advice or consultation services of CMCA should be directed to the Executive Director. Any such discussions should be held in private between the requesting entity and the appropriate officers of CMCA.

 

PROHIBITED ACTIVITIES

 

CMCA officers, employees, and members should refrain from the following when acting in their capacity as officers, employees, or members of CMCA (i.e., at meetings and informal discussions with third parties, conference calls, etc.):

 

  • Discussions involving non-public pricing information, especially CMCA’s or member’s expectations as to future prices.

 

  • Discussions involving market trades and strategies.

 

  • Discussions which are intended to reach agreement or to cause a collaborated action or reactionary effect in the market place unless such agreement or action would be expressly permitted by state law or acceptable to the appropriate regulatory agency or authority.

 

  • Discussions which are intended to reach agreement or to cause actions to exclude competitors from markets unless such agreement or action would be expressly permitted by state law or will be effective only if accepted by a regulatory agency.

 

ACTIVITIES WHICH ARE PERMITTED

 

CMCA employees may discuss and approve matters relating to:

 

  • Market actions based on documented public knowledge and information.

 

  • Other matters if any agreement or action will be permitted by express state approval or any such action or agreement will be filed with a governmental body for acceptance.

 

  • Public pricing and public cost information.

 

  • Developments in legal and regulatory matters of public interest.

 

For any matters which you desire to discuss which may adversely affect competition, you should have a legitimate reason for the discussion, such as to promote market development, develop public policy criteria, and operating procedures, enhance system operations, or to reach a settlement. If you do not have a legitimate business reason for discussing a matter which could adversely affect competition, please refrain from discussing the matter during CMCA meetings and other related communications.

 

CMCA members and staff are also encouraged to read the Anti-Trust Guidelines published by the Federal Trade Commission for further clarity. See link below:

 

https://www.ftc.gov/sites/default/files/documents/public_events/joint-venture-hearings-antitrust-guidelines-collaboration-among-competitors/ftcdojguidelines-2.pdf