Thunder Basin Coal Co. v. Reich, 510 U.S. 200, 8 (1994)

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Cite as: 510 U. S. 200 (1994)

Opinion of the Court


In cases involving delayed judicial review 8 of final agency actions, we shall find that Congress has allocated initial review to an administrative body where such intent is "fairly discernible in the statutory scheme." Block v. Community Nutrition Institute, 467 U. S. 340, 351 (1984), quoting Association of Data Processing Service Organizations, Inc. v. Camp, 397 U. S. 150, 157 (1970). Whether a statute is intended to preclude initial judicial review is determined from the statute's language, structure, and purpose, its legislative history, Block, 467 U. S., at 345, and whether the claims can be afforded meaningful review. See, e. g., Board of Governors, FRS v. MCorp Financial, Inc., 502 U. S. 32 (1991); Whitney Nat. Bank in Jefferson Parish v. Bank of New Orleans & Trust Co., 379 U. S. 411 (1965).


Applying this analysis to the review scheme before us, we conclude that the Mine Act precludes district court jurisdiction over the pre-enforcement challenge made here. The Act establishes a detailed structure for reviewing violations of "any mandatory health or safety standard, rule, order, or regulation promulgated" under the Act. 814(a). A mine operator has 30 days to challenge before the Commission any citation issued under the Act, after which time an un-contested order becomes "final" and "not subject to review by any court or agency." 815(a) and (d). Timely challenges are heard before an administrative law judge (ALJ),

8 Because court of appeals review is available, this case does not implicate " 'the strong presumption that Congress did not mean to prohibit all judicial review.' " Bowen v. Michigan Academy of Family Physicians, 476 U. S. 667, 672 (1986), quoting Dunlop v. Bachowski, 421 U. S. 560, 567 (1975).


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