October 26, 2013
The Common Sense Show
Mike and Chantel Sacket, from Priest Lake, Idaho, were preparing an 0.63 acre plot of land for the construction of their new home when an order by the EPA was issued to remove piles of fill material and replant the vegetation that they had removed from their property. The couple paid $23,000 for their property.
The order from the EPA was issued after the couple had gone through the process of acquiring all of the necessary permits to begin construction. Failure to comply with the EPA order would have resulted in a daily fine of up to $37,500.
The Idaho couple sued, in an attempt to prove that their land did not meet the criteria for being declared a wetland by the EPA, however, the lower court refused to hear the case. Fortunately, the Supreme Court sided with Mike and Chantel as well as several other property owners who had been the victims of EPA tyranny. The details of the case are provided here.
What seemed like a victory for property owners against the EPA may prove to be short-lived. The EPA is back and they are back with a renewed vengeance. Under the Clean Water Restoration Act, the EPA is in control of all “navigable waters.” On the surface, the term “navigable waters” would seem to provide some measure of protection to the public from invasive EPA enforcement by placing some reasonable limitations on the EPA’s regulatory power. Alas, that is proving not to be the case.
The Clean Water Restoration Act
The Clean Water Restoration Act goes far beyond the original intent of the law which was the protection of waterfowl and the conservation of wetlands. The proverbial fly in the ointment has its roots in the recent removal of the term “navigable waters”.
Under the new guidelines, if you use well water, the EPA has jurisdiction over your property and can even forcibly evict you and your family. If it rained overnight, or you have runoff from a recent snowfall, and there is any resulting puddles on your property, this can result in the loss of the free use of your property. You are also subject to eviction from your land if your property resides above an underground water aquifer.
A Thinly Veiled Excuse
In reality, this law has nothing to with preserving water and is simply a thinly veiled excuse to separate as many Americans from their land as possible. This strategy is straight out of the Agenda 21 playbook and it is being used to attack private property rights throughout the West. This strategy dovetails nicely with something I recently wrote about with regard to the fact that many state governments in the West are prohibiting the trapping and use of rainwater and the reuse of farm irrigation water. The last thing the Federal government wants is to allow Americans the right to fully control their property and to experience any kind of water independence.