Legal Taking of Private Land

Making Land Theft Legal is Reprehensible!

Step One-Purchase the Property

A person buys a parcel of several acres of land that contain various wetland areas to include a deep pond in a restricted development. The Deed Restriction Document that he/she signs upon purchase states emphatically that NO wetlands will be filled with any material and each parcel is designated as residential only. All water that enters that purchased land is apparently contained on that land in the form of wetlands and a permanent pond. Although the adjacent land of concern in this issue of theft is much higher, it is verified that no water from that higher adjacent land flows into the acreages of the newly purchased parcel.

Step Two-Qualify and Proceed

The owner of the newly purchased parcel expeditiously applies for and obtains an Agricultural Exemption in opposition to the deed restriction concerning residential only and no filling material on wetland areas to include deep ponds. The county and environmental agencies ignore the deed restrictions and the permits are issued that allow diverting all water onto the adjacent land concerned in this issue. Thereby, all regulations concerning wetlands and ponds are nullified and that purchased land can be filled with dry land material and elevated as much as desired. Large amounts of discarded material from road construction projects are easily acquired for that purpose. The permitted agricultural land owner is then allowed to drain the water from his/her land into the adjacent land of concern followed by filling and elevating almost all of his/her land to include the wetland areas and deep pond areas. The land is not only elevated and rearranged to allow severe drainage into the adjacent private land, but in addition, a sub-surface drainage system is constructed on the agricultural designated land that severely increases the speed and amount of the forced water into the adjacent private land of concern. At first the permitted Agricultural Exemption person activates the drainage system only during periods of rainfall to create an illusion that the amount of water in the adjacent land of concern is the supposedly “natural” flow from rainfall (but it is not). He/she then continues utilizing the sub-surface drainage system to drain his/her water into the adjacent property but changes the forced flow to occur every day so that the flow is not only during rainfall but also during dry weather until the very large chosen area receiving the drainage in the adjacent private land of concern is in transitional wetland form. However, soon after a short period of time has passed, it is designated as a genuine large swamp that contains genuine swamp plants. The environmental agencies then designate the adjacent land as a natural swamp and thereby under their jurisdiction.

Step Three-The Sink Hole is Created

Later, the Agricultural Exemption person installs a control station that not only allows daily flow through the use of the sub-surface drainage system into the adjacent land but also facilitates control of the water level in that created swamp on the adjacent private land. Thereafter, the water level in that adjacent land remains very deep and covers a large section of the adjacent property during days of rainfall and dry weather. The water on the adjacent land of concern, that has its level controlled to remain high at all times, gradually seeps to the lower areas below the surface that contain limestone. The limestone is gradually dissolved into the water. That liquefied limestone is drawn to the surface by the agricultural person and then thrust onto the few dry areas of the adjacent land. During a very short period just before the spring rains appear and when there is little rainfall, the agricultural exemption person ceases the use of the control station so as to allow the surface of the land on the adjacent property to hold less water. The seepage into the lower surface becomes very minimal. The removal of the underground liquefied limestone allows a vacant cavern to exist there. After that short dry period, the spring storms begin again and the controlled drainage fills the adjacent land to the high level again. The weight of the rainwater plus the water forced onto the surface of the adjacent property allows that land to collapse into the caverns below creating a huge sinkhole. The deep sinkhole creates the space required to allow a greater amount of water from other adjoining private lands to be drained into that adjacent land of concern. The depth of the central area of the created sinkhole is at first about 5 feet below the natural land surface. However, as the procedure is repeated each year, that depth is increased considerably with the surrounding land descending into that central area also becoming lowered accordingly.

Step Four-The Victim Becomes Active

The owner of the adjacent acreages land of concern becomes worried about the drastic change on his/her land and notifies the environmental agencies, the County and the State to examine the large area that is now a huge, deep swamp.

The adjacent land owner is then notified that the large, very deep created swamp on his/her land is only a large natural (not created) wetland pond and falls under the jurisdiction of the governmental agencies. The adjacent land owner is notified that the drainage is caused by “natural” flow and not by any drainage system or elevation of the neighboring Agricultural Exemption land. The burial of the wetlands and deep pond on that now agricultural land and the serious elevation of that land are discarded. This information is documented as absolutely correct and is filed as a legal document.

The created, forced flow of water increases so that the adjacent landowner’s residential area is threatened and is becoming part of the swamp. The adjacent land owner advises the agency that a majority of the water on his/her adjacent land is not there by natural flow but the agency stands firm with its decision and closes the issue.

A Certified expert that has expertise in the field and has been hired to work on similar issues for the government certifies that the deep swamp area on the adjacent property is not by natural flow and 74% or more of the water on that adjacent property does not belong on that property. In addition, it was verified that 26% or less of the water contained on the adjacent land of concern would be there naturally and would collect in a very small area for a very short period of time and thereafter dissipate quickly. Therefore, no wetland is ever naturally created on the Adjacent Private Land nor does any water from that adjacent land ever flow from the adjacent land into that land that has been permitted to an agricultural parcel of land.

The Court Decides

A court then decides that the environmental agencies in addition to other governmental agencies are better qualified and more accurate than any qualified and certified expert in the field paid by the adjacent property owner. Consequently, the very large (not “naturally”) created swamp land on the adjacent land is seized from the adjacent property owner and given to the Agricultural Exemption person with all systems of drainage activated. The land owner with the Agricultural Exemption obtained the support from environmental and agricultural agencies in addition to the state and county to obtain a very large section of the adjacent landowner’s land as his/her water retention area. It is documented as LEGAL.

What changes need to be made to prevent this form of thievery?
  • We, the people, need to pressure the Florida Legislature to construct a bill that states that each privately owned parcel of land that has been surveyed to establish the borders of that land, has the established right to deny anyone the right to divert any water into his/her land by any means to include through the use of a subsurface drainage system and/or elevating their land or lands in any manner to facilitate drainage of any kind.
  • Deny the right of environmental agencies to use their power to take land through the use of “Regulatory Taking”.
  • Do away with all Agenda 21 land taking (theft) provisions.Change 373.406 with a statement declaring that no water shall be diverted into any privately owned land at any time, by any means for any reason and especially by any person who qualifies for a 373.406 Agricultural Exemption. The case by case provision in 373.406 must be discarded and all private land thefts are treated equally in accordance to law.

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