UTAH STATE STANDS UP TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
By Roger Fredinburg
I was elated to find Wednesdays news (03-31-2010) filled with revelations about Utah's Governor signing a bill to use eminent domain as a tool to reclaim State lands inhabited unconstitutionally by the Federal Government.
Had it happened today, April fools day, I would have thought it was a joke.
My initial reaction was to throw up my hands and holler a few Amen's.
But then I started researching the fuzzy logic used by the Governor of Utah and others to reason out the facts and I came away only 1/2 inspired.
While on the surface I am 100% in favor of States reclaiming Federal lands in the west. My motives are more pure that Governor Herbert's are, or so it seems.
I am opposed to the Federal control of masses of western lands because the constitution clearly limits federal powers.
And in article 1 is very clear that the Feds can only own 10 miles square the District of Columbia and a few lands for "Forts" and Postal stations etc.
Nowhere is the Federal government granted the right to own any excess of land, certainly not the entire Pacific Northwest and Alaska.
I am even more bothered by the Governor of Utah's further assessment that the lands should be sold or utilized for funding public schools.
I don't know what planet the Governor lives on or more appropriately, hopes to rule one day, but I assure you the public schools aren't lacking money.
The average classroom in America today costs the taxpayers over $350,000 per/classroom per/year. But, the bean counters can only legitimately account for a fraction of that money; about $80,000.00.
Nobody seems able to explain where the other $270,000.00 goes?
The buildings are on separate Bond issues and we all know the Janitor isn't making much, and the maintenance obligations aren't being kept as promised otherwise we wouldn't have so many school buildings in disrepair.
Where the "excesses" are is anybodies guess.
The point is, the Governor and the Legislators in Utah are right to take back the land, but wrong to advance a further deterioration of civilization by funding the anti-America anti-Christ movement in the liberal indoctrination camps we refer to as public schools.
In addition the Governor signed a chilling anti-outdoorsman act designed to protect private property rights while locking millions of Utah's outdoorsmen out of many traditional recreation areas.
In his public statements the Governor said of HB141...
"I am signing HB141 because we need to begin the process of addressing the unfortunate gulf between outdoor recreationists and private property owners," Herbert said. "I recognize the potential conflict between private property rights and the right of public access to Utah's waterways."
The new law will take effect on May 11, 2010. The new law, changes the recreational easement recognized in Conatser v. Johnson.
This was the Utah Supreme Court decision in 2008 that allowed the public to walk on the private bed of a public water-body.
What the new law prohibits... AP reporting
"Again, according to the DWR: "The new law does not allow recreational water users (including anglers, kayakers, tubers, hunters and others) to walk on the private bed of a public water-body. This means that if you are fishing or recreating in public water that flows over private property closed to trespass, you may not walk on the land beneath the water without obtaining landowner permission."
"You are allowed to float on the surface of the water, even if you have private property beneath the water on which you are floating. You may also fish while floating. Certain conditions apply for floating, including having enough water to float, wide enough waterway to float, no stopping or anchoring--you must move with the flow, water must be in a natural channel, and other restrictions. For more information check the DWR website here." END QUOTE
One person brought up Brigham Young's statement of July 25, 1847, the day after the pioneers entered the Salt Lake Valley. Said Brigham, "There is to be no private ownership of streams of water... Walk faithfully in the light of these laws and you will be a prosperous people."
Governor Herbert has family members who own land along the Provo River.
Is that a possible reason he signed the new law into effect?
Herbert denies that this influenced his decision.
Still, Utah Gov. Gary R. Herbert signed two bills authorizing the state to use eminent domain to seize some of the federal government's most valuable land.
Supporters hope the bills will trigger a flood of similar legislation throughout the West.
than 60% of Utah is owned by the U.S. government.
Federal ownership hinders the ability of local and State government to generate tax revenue.
Governments typically use eminent domain to take private property for public use.
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This is the first time Government at the State level has attempted to reclaim land from federal ownership using Eminent Domain.
Many in Oregon, Northern California and throughout the west are watching closely and looking at their own circumstances with an eye on the prize.
If only they were doing it for less deleterious reasons.
© 2010 Roger Fredinburg - All Rights Reserved