If there’s one legacy that Barack Obama will have, it will be expanding the federal government’s reach into nearly every area of our lives, as one Wyoming rancher found out the hard way. However, he didn’t take the power grab lying down, and he ended up crushing the power-hungry president in an epic court battle.
Andy Johnson raises livestock on his Wyoming farm, and he had built a stock pond to aid him in keeping his herd hydrated. However, when Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency learned about Johnson’s pond, it decided it was going to do everything in its power to force him to fill it in, according to a report from WND.
Despite Johnson going through the proper state channels and getting the required permits, the EPA determined his pond violated federal regulations under the Clean Water Act, which was a massive power grab from the agency, and started levying fines against him totaling $37,500 per day that he kept the pond on his land. All-in-all, the EPA assessed just over $16 million in fines against Johnson, all because he built a little retention pond on his own property.
For the past year, Johnson has been engaged in a lawsuit against Obama’s EPA for its massive overreach into his private property, and this week, he finally came away victorious. Johnson reached an agreement with the EPA that puts the agency right in its place while allowing him to not pay any fines and still keep his pond.
“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,” the legal team revealed.
Pacific Legal Foundation Staff Attorney Johnathan Wood called it a victory for ”common sense.”
“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,” Wood said.
Ecstatic over his incredible victory, Johnson released a statement about the lengthy fight.
“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.”
Surely we can all agree that while the EPA does serve a purpose, its power has grown far beyond what was ever imagined when the bureau was created, and it’s long past time to reign it in whether it be through litigation like the Johnsons did, or through Congressional action. Regardless, it’s great to see a “little person” stand up against our Goliath government and strut away victorious as the EPA licks its wounds.
Not only is it inspiring, but it also lets the un-elected bullycrats in Washington know that We the People are tired of their being involved in literally every facet of our lives.