Saturday, January 26, 2013

Web of environmental rules threatens Gulf Coast businesses with jail, steep fines

By Barnini Chakraborty Published January 26, 2013
When Burt Rico was caught using a deer feeder equipped with lights while hunting in Louisiana, he was slapped with a $1,051 fine and sentenced to 60 days in jail. He was cited for hunting without a big-game license, failing to wear hunter orange and hunting deer with an artificial light. 
Until he was cited, he didn’t know he had done anything wrong, he claims.  
Rico’s case isn’t an isolated one. According to a new report by the Texas Public Policy Foundation, thousands of people are being prosecuted for environmental crimes every day they didn’t know were even on the books. They’ve been threatened, fined and thrown in jail. The trend is especially prominent along the Gulf Coast, but is becoming a national issue.  
In Texas, there are 11 felonies relating to harvesting oysters that can land a person in prison for a decade. In the Carolinas, government officials have cracked down on  fishermen -- both commercial and sport -- and in some cases cut off their ability to make a living.  “There isn’t a day I go out where a rule, law or regulation is not broken,” Capt. Terrell Gould told  To Read More……

My Take – I’m not impressed with the ‘deer hunter’ that is hunting a night without a license, especially one using light to blind and freeze the deer in order to get an easy shot.  That is illegal – everywhere – where there is deer hunting.  However I posted this article because it highlights points that need to be addressed.  The level of environmental regulations are mounting at a rate that is impossible for anyone to keep up with and are clearly out of control and taking upright people and legitimate businessmen, doing the things they have been doing for years, trying to make an honest living, and turing them into criminals.  This is insane!  

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