Wyoming Rancher Sticks It To The Feds…Wins Big Time Against Obama And The EPA

Posted, Compiled and Edited by TLB Staff

According to EFT News 

“This is one for the good guys.

It might have lacked the drama of the Bundy ranch standoff in Nevada two years ago, and the bloodshed of a related militia occupation in Oregon last year, but a court settlement […] was a smashing victory for a Wyoming man fighting an ever more intrusive federal government.

And while the settlement won’t create a legal precedent, it’s a property rights victory for Americans throughout the country — a victory won by a young rancher and the Constitution-protecting legal team that stood with him.

The case that drew the attention of national news outlets pitted rancher Andy Johnson against the Obama administration’s Environmental Protection Agency and its overzealous agents who tried to fine Johnson millions of dollars for a pond he created on his own land, at his own expense, in Fort Bridge, Wyoming.

Andy - Daugh fishing

The battle started two years ago, when Johnson obtained a state permit to dam a small creek running through his 8-acre property, according to The New York Times. The pond that was created was not only a benefit to the Johnson’s ranch, to be used for watering his horses and cattle, it also became an attraction to wildlife. [Pictured is Andy Johnson and his daughter Aspen, 6, fishing at the pond he created on his property in Fort Bridger, Wyo. Credit Kim Raff for NY Times] 

But the federal government decided Johnson hadn’t gotten the EPA’s approval for the project and was violating the Clean Water Act. It ordered him to dismantle the pond — on pain of fines reaching a ludicrous, business-killing $37,500 a day.”


With fines adding up to over $16 million, enter the Pacific Legal Foundation seeking to vindicate Johnson’s property rights with a lawsuit against the EPA. After two years of legal wrangling there is the sweet taste of victory to report. 

According to WND.com  the PLF has announced the Fed has agreed to resolve the case, and a federal court has put it’s stamp of approval on it. “Importantly, under the settlement, the Johnson family’s pond will remain; they won’t pay any fines; they don’t concede any federal jurisdiction to regulate their pond; and the government won’t pursue any further enforcement actions based on the pond’s construction,” …“This is a victory for common sense and the environment, and it brings an end to all the uncertainty and fear that the Johnson family faced,” said Jonathan Wood, a staff attorney with Pacific Legal Foundation.
Andy Johnson EPA
Johnson [Pictured here, courtesy of the PLG] released a statement in which he said, “This is a huge victory for us as well as private property owners across the country. The next family that finds itself in our situation, facing ominous threats from EPA, can take heart in knowing that many of these threats will not come to pass. If, like us, you stand up to the overreaching bureaucrats, they may very well back down.”

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