By Eric Boehm. A rancher is taking the Environmental Protection Agency to federal court, asking a judge to stop the agency from fining him more than $16 million because he built a small pond on his property.
Andy Johnson of Fort Bridger, Wyoming says he made sure to get the proper permits from his state government before building the pond. After all, this is America in the 21st century, and nothing done on your own property — certainly when it involves the use of water — is beyond government concern.
Johnson is facing millions in fines from the federal government after the EPA determined his small pond — technically a “stock pond” to provide better access to water for animals on his ranch — is somehow violating the federal Clean Water Act.
“We went through all the hoops that the state of Wyoming required, and I’m proud of what we built,” Johnson said. “The EPA ignored all that.” (Read more from “Wyoming Man Files Suit Over Massive EPA Fines for Building Pond” HERE)
Wyoming Man Takes EPA to Court
By Wyoming Tribune Eagle. A southwest Wyoming farmer is taking the Environmental Protection Agency to court for what he says is an illegal overreach of its authority.
Andy Johnson of Fort Bridger has been locked in a battle of wills with the EPA since 2013, when he built a stock pond on his property to provide a watering hole for his cattle.
Not long after the pond was built, however, the EPA informed Johnson that the pond, which is connected to Six Mile Creek south of Fort Bridger, was in violation of the Clean Water Act.
Johnson protested, stating that he had sought and received a permit through the state engineer’s office, which subsequently confirmed that the stock pond met all of the office’s legal requirements.
But that failed to convince the EPA, which sent Johnson a compliance order in January 2014 instructing him to remove the stock pond or face $37,500 in fines for every day he refused to do so. (Read more from this story HERE)