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Comparison definition.  A statement is a legislative rule rather than a statement of policy or an interpretive rule if it gives substance to vague language, does so in an obligatory fashion, and is treated by the Agency as 'controlling in the field.' See Community Nutrition Inst. v. Young, 818 F.2d 943, 946 (D.C.Cir.1987); McLouth Steel Prods. Corp. v. Thomas, 838 F.2d 1317, 1320-22 (D.C.Cir.1988); Appalachian Power, 208 F.3d at 1021. See also the three-part test applied in Molycorp, Inc. v. EPA, 197 F.3d 543, 545 (D.C.Cir.1999) 


In cases where courts have attempted to draw the line between legislative rules and statements of policy, courts have considered whether the agency action (1) 'impose[s] any rights and obligations' or (2) 'genuinely leaves the agency and its decisionmakers free to exercise discretion.' Community Nutrition Inst., 818 F.2d at 946; Chamber of Commerce v. Dep't of Labor, 174 F.3d 206, 212 (D.C.Cir. 1999). In McLouth, the court recognized that '[i]n practice, there appears some overlap in the Community Nutrition criteria' because '[i]f a statement denies the decisionmaker discretion in the area of its coverage, so that [the agency] will automatically decline to entertain challenges to the ...

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