Rulemaking Powers (Article VI)
Article VI of the Revised ICJ vests the Commission with broad rulemaking powers. Rules promulgated by the Commission have the force and effect of statutory law within member states and all state agencies and courts must give full effect to the rules. Revised Interstate Compact for Juveniles, art. IV, § 2; see In re Dependency of D.F.M., 236 P.3d 961, 966 n.41 (Wash. Ct. App. 2010) (“RCW 13.24.011 art. IV (providing that the interstate commission for juveniles has the power to ‘[a]dopt rules to effect the purposes and obligations of [the Interstate Compact for Juveniles] which shall have the force and effect of statutory law and shall be binding in the compacting states to the extent and in the manner provided in this compact.’”). In adopting rules, the Commission is required to substantially comply with the “Model State Administrative Procedures Act,” Model State Admin. Procedures Act (Unif. Law Comm’n 2000), or such other administrative procedures act that complies with due process requirements. It should be noted the Commission’s rulemaking process must only substantially comply with the noted provision and thus there is latitude for some variations.
The Commission’s rulemaking authority is also limited by Article VI, Section E, which provides that if a majority of state legislatures reject a Commission rule by enacting a statute to that effect, the rule has no force or effect in any member state. Consequently, a single state may not unilaterally reject a rule even if it adopts legislation to that effect. Rejection of a rule requires legislative action by a majority of the member states.
The Revised ICJ provides a mechanism for challenging Commission rules. Under Article VI, Section D, not later than sixty days after the promulgation of a rule any interested party may file a petition in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia or the United States District Court in which the Commission has its principal offices (currently the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Kentucky) challenging the rule. If the court finds that the Commission’s action is not supported by substantial evidence in the rulemaking record, the court must declare the rule unlawful and set it aside. The Model State Administrative Procedures Act guides the determination as to whether substantial evidence exists to support the Commission’s action.