Man Sentenced to 30 Days for Catching Rain Water on Own Property Enters Jail
Who owns the rainwater that falls from the sky onto your roof and runs down your property? If you said that the landowner owns the water until it leaves their property, you are wrong. Gary Harrington will be serving in jail until September 2014 for collecting rainwater.
(CNSNews.com) — Gary Harrington, the Oregon man convicted of collecting rainwater and snow runoff on his rural property surrendered Wednesday morning to begin serving his 30-day, jail sentence in Medford, Ore.
“I’m sacrificing my liberty so we can stand up as a country and stand for our liberty,” Harrington told a small crowd of people gathered outside of the Jackson County (Ore.) Jail.
Several people held signs that showed support for Harrington as he was taken inside the jail. Harrington was found guilty two weeks ago of breaking a 1925 law for having, what state water managers called “three illegal reservoirs” on his property. He was convicted of nine misdemeanors, sentenced to 30 days in jail and fined over $1500 for collecting rainwater and snow runoff on his property.
The Oregon Water Resources Department, claims that Harrington has been violating the state’s water use law by diverting water from streams running into the Big Butte River. But Harrington says he is not diverting the state’s water — merely collecting rainwater and snow melt that falls or flows on his own property. Harrington has vowed to continue to fight the penalty, stating that the government has become “big bullies” and that “from here on in, I’m going to fight it.”
“They’ve just gotten to be big bullies and if you just lay over and die and give up, that just makes them bigger bullies, Harrington said in an interview two weeks ago with CNSNews.com.
“We as Americans, we need to stand on our constitutional rights, on our rights as citizens and hang tough. This is a good country, we’ll prevail,” he said.
Government monopoly on water works like this: Water that falls from the sky belongs to the municipalities not because they are low on water but because if the consumer collects the water they will use less water from the municipalities and that’s just no good for the $$water meter$$. Do you think your local city should have a monopoly on water?