Update: 3/21/12: Can the EPA violate the constitution to implement the Clean Water Act? That was the question before the SCOTUS.
The suit was brought by landowners Mike and Chantell Sackett who were deprived of their constitutional rights by the EPA when they tried to build their dream home. The EPA falsely claimed the land was wetland. (check original story below)
If you look at the Sackett property and think it’s wetland, you probably need new eyeglasses.
The SCOTUS has unanimously ruled today that landowners have the right to contest the EPA and the Clean Water Act. It is the first step of many the Sacketts will need to take in order to build on their property. Hopefully the EPA won’t bankrupt them in court along the way.
This ruling does put the clamps on a rogue government agency that has bullied landowners with ferocity and irresponsibility. This ruling isn’t justice for what the Sacketts have been put through but it’s a start.
Listen to their testimony –
Original Story: 10/2/11: The Supreme Court of the United States will hear the case of Sackett v. Environmental Protection Agency next month. The four year old case is one in which the EPA deprived Mike and Chantell Sackett of their private property and due process rights, circumvented the courts, violated the Constitution, and used the Clean Water Act to do it.
Can a government agency deprive a citizen of their private property and their Constitutional rights? That is what this case is about.
The Sacketts were clearing their land to build a dream home in Idaho with all the necessary permits in place when the EPA told them to stop building, restore the land to its original condition, and pay enormous fines because their land was protected wetland even though it wasn’t listed as such on the EPA’s own documents.
The Sacketts were threatened with fines they couldn’t pay and faced financial ruin. They decided to fight. The Pacific Legal Foundation came to their aide, took their case, and will argue it before the nine Supreme Court justices. Read more here
The EPA, with a Marxist-like attitude, violated the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution in the Sackett case. I am not a Constitutional lawyer, and I get impatient with all the legal mumbo jumbo. Sometimes you know something isn’t right and this case is not right.
The Fifth Amendment is clear –No person shall be …deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use without just compensation.
The Sackett case is an important one in that it will help define how far a government agency can go in controlling private property. Read more: Reason.com
You have to hear this video. It’s nuts and it’s the worst form of government bullying imagineable. The EPA is demanding fines of $37,500 a day from this middle class family and if they don’t fight, they’d have unaffordable fines to pay.
The Sacketts, in their own words –