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Wyoming welder faces $75,000 a day in EPA fines for building pond on his property

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posted on Mar, 14 2014 @ 07:17 PM
reply to post by mysterioustranger

I'm not trying to sound snarky or anything, so don't take this the wrong way. Perhaps you should reread the article, because the article clearly states that he had a permit.

posted on Mar, 14 2014 @ 07:19 PM
reply to post by Metallicus

Sounds just like another TAX grab scam....let the owners do what they want as long as above natural (or underground) streams are not affected.

posted on Mar, 14 2014 @ 07:23 PM
I stand by the homeowners - permit or not - that the fact EPA are issuing a $75,000/DAY fine, that EPA are in the wrong.

I really hope some guns are left in Wyoming and that the people (who aren't dumbed down yet) know where to point them!

posted on Mar, 14 2014 @ 07:40 PM
reply to post by azdaze

I stand by what I said. Without a permit and review from the Army Corps of Engineers who govern such builds. In particular, this from said article:

"Johnson may be in for a rude awakening.

The government says he violated the Clean Water Act by building a dam on a creek without a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers. Further, the EPA claims that material from his pond is being discharged into other waterways."

"But the EPA isn’t backing down and argues they have final say over the issue. They also say Johnson needs to restore the land or face the fines." permit/review from the division responsible for such things: The Army Corps of Engineers.

edit on 09-22-2013 by mysterioustranger because: ckg

posted on Mar, 14 2014 @ 07:43 PM
reply to post by BritofTexas

by damming up water that would go to others down stream? That is despicable.

I hope he gets bankrupted for being such an inconsiderate and selfish jerk.

Had he dug a hole somewhere and filled it with water instead, I am sure he would have been left alone.

I am sure those downstream dont want his animals polluting the water they receive.

posted on Mar, 14 2014 @ 07:46 PM
reply to post by mysterioustranger

I understand that. But he also had the permission and permits from local authorities, and was told by them no EPA permit was needed since it was a stock pond.

posted on Mar, 14 2014 @ 08:26 PM
reply to post by Metallicus

Can a mod delete the comments of people who post and do not even read the article please.....

Just please.......

posted on Mar, 15 2014 @ 01:59 AM
So if I'm understanding this correctly, the federal government is taking issue with denial of water usage rights to property owners downstream?

I kinda understand tha--phone's ringin'. Oh, it's Mexico. They want the Colorado River back.

Friggin' hypocrites.

posted on Mar, 15 2014 @ 03:38 AM

reply to post by mysterioustranger

I understand that. But he also had the permission and permits from local authorities, and was told by them no EPA permit was needed since it was a stock pond.

building a pond is not the issue.

Diverting water IS the issue. the guy is a jerk for doing that, not making a pond.

posted on Mar, 15 2014 @ 12:18 PM
reply to post by HanzHenry

Yeah? Except that isn't the issue.The issue is whether or not he was in violation of 404f of the water act. here are the exemptions to that act...

The fact that he was diverting a few thousand gallons of water is irrelevant according to the EPA's own rules. I understand that you have a personal opinion on that matter, but that is irrelevant as well. The only thing that matters are the facts.

posted on Mar, 15 2014 @ 01:10 PM
On the face of it, this is ridiculous.

But why do I get the feeling that it's like many Daily Mail stories in the UK - we're not being given all the pertinent facts and the situation isn't quite as presented?

I never trust the media

posted on Mar, 15 2014 @ 08:41 PM
Why don't the EPA worry about those people and conglomerates that REALLY cause our environment a problem and leave this guy alone? Just makes them look desperate, pushy, heavy handed, well like a bunch of a-holes.

And, to those who say he deserves what he got, READ the article. He got approval, in writing mind you, FROM THE STATE HE LIVES IN!

posted on Mar, 15 2014 @ 11:30 PM
reply to post by Meditationplus

I did. Especially about missing the required permit from the ARMY CORPS of engineer. He had the required permit to build...but not damn up local water without approval of the CORPS concerning the water runoff.

Can we please delete those respondents that don't read the post completely before they respond?????

Suggestion: For your clarity, please read the OP's original post and visit the main link for the article so you can grasp my postings...PLEASE???

Thank you....done with this one. MS

posted on Mar, 16 2014 @ 12:11 AM
reply to post by Metallicus

That has been a law for years, regarding adding or removing wetlands. It makes sense to me if you think about it, if they don't protect the wet lands, they might just try and turn it into a parking lot. What if you make a wetland and don't take care of it, plus it may confuse things if it's not a wetland, you turn it into one and someone wants to change it back into parking lot , they can't.

I know a couple of guys did this, one has not been caught yet but he didn't know it was illegal, he just wanted to fish in his back yard.

May be you could just sneak it in on them, say you have a mud hole, you go to the city and say " I want to turn the mud hole in my back yard into a parking lot " the city says " no it's wetlands ". Then you say Ok and just add more water and remove more mud, wala fish pond.

posted on Mar, 16 2014 @ 03:00 AM
When will the EPA be fined for stealing people's money?

posted on Mar, 16 2014 @ 06:31 AM
Funny how it's no big deal when an energy company builds a 'wind farm', spanning 90 acres, with fifty 100-foot tall propellor turbines, but when a guy digs one little pond, the EPA throws a hissy fit.

posted on Mar, 16 2014 @ 08:47 AM
A proposed windfarm requires years of environmental impact studies and consequent approval from the highest levels of state and federal bodies before work commences. Here, the public is also given ample opportunity to voice any concerns (however frivolent) over their perceived impacts.

Damming a natural stream creates a number of concerns, the major ones being denial of water to downstream users while filling the dam (stagnation and algal blooms a possibility beyond simply a lack of water) and the potential dangers of the dam failing (needs a means of controlled emergency dewatering).

The fine does appear excessive though and it's not the owners fault that required studies were not insisted upon prior to giving him approval.
edit on 16/3/2014 by Pilgrum because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 16 2014 @ 03:21 PM


All Andy Johnson wanted to do was build a stock pond on his sprawling eight-acre Wyoming farm. He and his wife Katie spent hours constructing it, filling it with crystal-clear water, and bringing in brook and brown trout, ducks and geese. It was a place where his horses could drink and graze, and a private playground for his three children.

But instead of enjoying the fruits of his labor, the Wyoming welder says he was harangued by the federal government, stuck in what he calls a petty power play by the Environmental Protection Agency. He claims the agency is now threatening him with civil and criminal penalties – including the threat of a $75,000-a-day fine.

“I have not paid them a dime nor will I,” a defiant Johnson told “I will go bankrupt if I have to fighting it. My wife and I built [the pond] together. We put our blood, sweat and tears into it. It was our dream.”

Fox News Source

I find this disgusting that a man can't build a pond on his own property without being threatened by the EPA. Our Government is getting totally out of control.

IMHO this is totally politically motivated...I wouldn't be surprised that the next step will be a visit from the IRS.

posted on Mar, 16 2014 @ 03:40 PM
reply to post by Metallicus

There is a law that allows federal and state governments to take your property anytime they wish.

It's called eminent domain and it is in the constitution
The fifth amendment final clause allows the taking of citizens property for government use and they are not required to tell you what that use is.

The Supreme Court has held that the federal government and each state has the power of eminent domain—the power to take private property for "public use". The Takings Clause, the last clause of the Fifth Amendment, limits the power of eminent domain by requiring that "just compensation" be paid if private property is taken for public use. The just compensation provision of the Fifth Amendment did not originally apply directly to the states, but since Chicago, B. & Q. Railroad Co. v. Chicago (1897), federal courts have held that the Fourteenth Amendment extended the effects of that provision to the states. The federal courts, however, have shown much deference to the determinations of Congress, and even more so to the determinations of the state legislatures, of what constitutes "public use". The property need not actually be used by the public; rather, it must be used or disposed of in such a manner as to benefit the public welfare or public interest. One exception that restrains the federal government is that the property must be used in exercise of a government's enumerated powers.

People that claim to support the constitution never read it. As this generation is illiterate if its longer that a sentence in this era of TL/DR public school forced retardation

edit on 3/16/2014 by Cito because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 16 2014 @ 05:11 PM

reply to post by Metallicus

Correct me if I'm wrong but It doesn't state in the article whether the owner has actually built a dam or diverted a downstream creek for this pond or not.

I understand the rage of the owner if his pond is entirely man-made and is not diverting water from going downstream, but in my parts, there are huge legal battles between farmers when one decides to dam water on his property for his livestock alone...

You are wrong about the article not mentioning whether he built a dam, but great comment and putting things into perspective. He did build a dam blocking a creak affecting downstream neighbors, FTFA:

But Johnson may be in for a rude awakening.

The government says he violated the Clean Water Act by building a dam on a creek without a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers. Further, the EPA claims that material from his pond is being discharged into other waterways. Johnson says he built a stock pond -- a man-made pond meant to attract wildlife -- which is exempt from Clean Water Act regulations.

However over-reaching it seems of the agency, it is designed and implemented to protect bad actors from negatively impacting their neighbors or even distant strangers. Like all great power it needs oversight and contains the potential for great abuse:

The authority of the EPA has recently been called into question over proposed rule changes that would redefine what bodies of water the government agency will oversee under the Clean Water Act.

The proposed changes would give the agency a say in ponds, lakes, wetlands and any stream -- natural or manmade -- that would have an effect on downstream navigable waters on both public land and private property. “If the compliance order stands as an example of how EPA intends to operate after completing its current ‘waters of the United States’ rulemaking, it should give pause to each and every landowner throughout the country,” the letter states.

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