United States District Court, W.D. Arkansas, Harrison Division
RONNIE EUGENE ROWLAND, JR. PLAINTIFF
NANCY A. BERRYHILL,  Acting Commissioner, Social Security Administration DEFENDANT
ERIN L. WIEDEMANN UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
Ronnie Eugene Rowland, Jr., brings this action pursuant to 42
U.S.C. § 405(g), seeking judicial review of a decision
of the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration
(Commissioner) denying his claims for a period of disability
and disability insurance benefits (DIB) and supplemental
security income (SSI) under the provisions of Titles II and
XVI of the Social Security Act (Act). In this judicial
review, the Court must determine whether there is substantial
evidence in the administrative record to support the
Commissioner's decision. See 42 U.S.C. §
protectively filed his current applications for DIB and SSI
on September 18, 2014, and September 29, 2014, respectively,
alleging an inability to work since December 18, 2012, due to
a broken foot and blindness in the right eye. (Tr. 119, 137,
148). For DIB purposes, Plaintiff maintained insured status
through March 31, 2018. (Tr. 119, 137). An administrative
hearing was held on November 19, 2015, at which Plaintiff and
a vocational expert testified. (Tr. 90-116).
written decision dated February 29, 2016, the ALJ found that
during the relevant time period, Plaintiff had severe
impairments of osteoarthritis and fracture of the right
ankle. (Tr. 20). However, after reviewing all of the evidence
presented, the ALJ determined that Plaintiff's impairment
did not meet or equal the level of severity of any impairment
listed in the Listing of Impairments found in Appendix I,
Subpart P, Regulation No. 4. (Tr. 20). The ALJ found that
Plaintiff retained the residual functional capacity (RFC) to
perform sedentary work as defined in 20 CFR 404.1567(a) and
416.967(a), except for the following:
[C]laimant would be limited to lifting and carrying up to 20
pounds occasionally, sit for up to six hours in an eight-hour
workday and stand and or walk for six hours in an eight-hour
workday. In addition, the claimant would require a cane for
ambulation. He would be precluded from climbing ladders,
ropes or scaffolds, but could occasionally climb ramps and
stairs, balance, crawl, kneel, stoop and crouch.
25-30). With the help of a vocational expert (VE), the ALJ
determined that while Plaintiff was unable to perform his
past relevant work, there were jobs that existed in
significant numbers in the national economy that Plaintiff
could perform, such as a small product assembler, a document
preparer, and an escort vehicle driver. (Tr. 26).
then requested a review of the hearing decision by the
Appeals Council, which denied that request on May 5, 2017.
(Tr. 1-5). Subsequently, Plaintiff filed this action. (Doc.
1). This case is before the undersigned pursuant to the
consent of the parties. (Doc. 5). Both parties have filed
appeal briefs, and the case is now ready for decision. (Docs.
Court's role is to determine whether the
Commissioner's findings are supported by substantial
evidence on the record as a whole. Ramirez v.
Barnhart, 292 F.3d 576, 583 (8th Cir. 2002). Substantial
evidence is less than a preponderance but it is enough that a
reasonable mind would find it adequate to support the
Commissioner's decision. The ALJ's decision must be
affirmed if the record contains substantial evidence to
support it. Edwards v. Barnhart, 314 F.3d 964, 966
(8th Cir. 2003). As long as there is substantial evidence in
the record that supports the Commissioner's decision, the
Court may not reverse it simply because substantial evidence
exists in the record that would have supported a contrary
outcome, or because the Court would have decided the case
differently. Haley v. Massanari, 258 F.3d 742, 747
(8th Cir. 2001). In other words, if after reviewing the
record it is possible to draw two inconsistent positions from
the evidence and one of those positions represents the
findings of the ALJ, the decision of the ALJ must be
affirmed. Young v. Apfel, 221 F.3d 1065, 1068 (8th
Court has reviewed the entire transcript and the parties'
briefs. For the reasons stated in the ALJ's well-reasoned
opinion and the Government's brief, the Court finds
Plaintiff's arguments on appeal to be without merit and
finds that the record as a whole reflects substantial
evidence to support the ALJ's decision. Accordingly, the
ALJ's decision is hereby summarily affirmed and
Plaintiff's Complaint is dismissed with prejudice.
See Sledge v. Astrue, No. 08-0089, 2008 WL 4816675
(W.D. Mo. Oct. 31, 2008) (summarily affirming ALJ's
denial of disability benefits), aff'd, 364
Fed.Appx. 307 (8th Cir. 2010).
SO ORDERED AND ADJUDGED.
 Nancy A. Berryhill, has been appointed
to serve as acting Commissioner of Social Security, and is
substituted as Defendant, pursuant to Rule 25(d)(1) of the