Government Makes Rainwater Illegal

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July 27, 2012 Posted by:

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In news that seems like it came straight out of Bizzaro World, a Man in Oregon has been sentenced to 30 days in jail after authorities say he had the nerve to collect rainwater.

Yep, RAIN WATER IS ILLEGAL.

As bizarre as it sounds, I guess it really shouldn’t be a surprise. We have covered numerous stories of how the government has been chipping away at the rights of land. From survival gardens being seized to the land owners in California who are being forced back on to the grid, people’s rights as land owners are being shredded by local, state and federal governments.

In the latest abuse of power, a man in Oregon has been sentenced to 30 days in jail and ordered to pay a $1,500 fine for collecting rainwater on his own land. Gary Harrington was convicted of nine misdemeanor crimes for filling his three man-made reservoirs with rainwater and snow runoff. The state of Oregon claims the water that fell from the sky, is owned by them and the Medford Water Commission.

Outlawing Rain Water

It just doesn’t get any crazier than this. What’s next charging us for the air that we breathe?

How we ended up in a place that allows the government to tell us what we can or can’t do on our own land is crazy in and of itself, but for the government to claim they now own the water that falls from the sky is almost beyond belief.

LET THE WATER WARS BEGIN

As unreal as it may sound, at least 9 states have made it illegal to collect rainwater on your own land. Utah, Oregon, Colorado and a number of other states have passed rainwater laws that either limit or all out ban the collection of rainwater. Apparently, it’s alright for mega corporations to take it, bottle it and then sell it to the public for profit; but if you should try to collect any for yourself – You might need a lawyer!

In this video from 2008, a Utah News Channel highlights the problem.

This issue has nothing to do with saving the environment.

In fact, a number of independent studies have all proven that letting people collect rainwater on their properties actually reduces demand from water facilities and improves conservation efforts. But therein lies the problem. Not only is this about controlling the people, but what lies at the heart of this problem seems to be money. If the government allows people to collect their own rainwater, how would the local water facilities charge the public for water?

Water has become big business. In fact, water is one of the fastest growing industries in the world today. Americans spend billions of dollars each year on bottled water – not counting the billions that go to government agencies – and this resource is quickly becoming one of the most politicized resources in the world.

Comments

162 Responses to " Government Makes Rainwater Illegal " Please share your thoughts...

  1. brett says:

    This seems a little much. How do they find out they are collecting in the first place? Also too with rain water you cant just let it sit so how are they keeping it pure? Plus what else are they doing with the water besides drinking it?

    • Esh says:

      Toilet flushing and irrigation, to name two good uses.

      • Greg says:

        I have several ponds on my ranch/farm. I do not irrigate from them but do water cattle and horses from these ponds. Does that mean I’m collecting water illegally here in Missouri?

    • Michael says:

      “a little too much”!? This is insane, is what it is. There is a vast difference between building a dam of some sort upstream of your neighbors, thus limiting or altogether denying them access to a water source that you-all share, and capturing rain that fall down from the sky and catching it in your own personal water reservoir. Regardless of the size of that reservoir. Only an absolute moron, or a lawyer, would argue against that. And we all know how Jesus Christ, the only Begotten Son of Lord God Almighty, felt about them. Woe unto you lawyers!

      • tomcu says:

        @Michael…..took the words out of my mouth!!!

        • rayfield says:

          How could they even consider something that they cannot control or produce, understandably if they dug the wells and pumped the water then they could charge for it, but rainwater???? that’s God’s provision. if you cannot make a change to such a perverse system, God can, and those who uphold such a law will answer to him
          in time

          • Hqueso says:

            Why not file charges that the state and water company are trespassing on your land by letting their water fall on it without your permission? I mean, I can’t take my belongings and store them in my neighbor’s yard, why can they?

          • Lynne Crass says:

            Does this mean they can be sued for water damage? Or will they throw out the fact that you don’t own your property, they do, but you are still responsible for it. Socialism at it’s finest!!

          • Sue says:

            @ Lynne Crass:
            Well, that’s rather “Capitalism at it’s finest” – making people pay for everything, even for rain water!

          • Enter your name...EJV21 says:

            This is redickless and forgive me lord 4 saying this but this is total bullcrap of the highest dagree. U really can’t stop poeple from collcting rainwater any more then producing rain yourself theres only one of two poeple who truly own the water and that is God and/or Jesus himself.

          • CPreston says:

            Guess their citizens now get to sue for Storm damages by heavy rains etc…..

        • melp says:

          amen!!!

          • melp says:

            I can not believe that our Gov can do this…we will have to have a no. on us pretty soon…It is scary..

      • Cat says:

        Micheal, not judging you, just holding you accountable… your language does not honor Jesus Christ the only Begotten Son of Lord God Almighty. Your point is perfect except for the foul language… just saying…

        • Dianne says:

          Cat
          You are kidding, right? Besides, you didn’t even spell his name right. Holding him accountable? His language is fine – coming from a believer here, I see NOTHING that dishonors Jesus Christ other than you judging, or rather, as you say, holding accountable. Get off your high horse and let us live in the Freedom Christ Provides through love an grace NOT CONDEMNATION.

          • Pascal says:

            Diane,
            You are a true Lady! Thank you.

          • Vanessa says:

            Dianne
            I think Cat saw the word dam and did not understand that it was not the word damn. She couldn’t really see and comprehend because her horse has long legs. Forgive her, God watches over babies and …
            I am a believer but am not living accordingly so I’m ok with pointing out stupidity.

        • AlaskaMom says:

          Cat, you should apologize to Dianne right now for offending her. Don’t you know that the 1st Amendment doesn’t apply to Christians? Besides, we should respect other people’s cultures. Michael and Cat and many of God’s children don’t see profanity as base and vulgar. It is simply a way of calling attention to a very important message. It sounds so grown up too – that’s why it’s called “adult language”.

          • Lorie says:

            Cussing is considered vulgar and offensive to a lot of people Christian or not and is no way considered “grown up” by any stretch of the imagination.

          • Courtney says:

            There was no foul language! Wow! Talk about a high horse!

          • Zesty says:

            Why would anyone care? I am to temper my thoughts and speech as to not offend the sheep? That’s NEVER gonna happen. I’ll say what I please, It’s one of the few freedoms we have left. I’ll die before I placate followers of fairy tales.

        • Denise says:

          What foul language? I think you need to get your glasses and your high horse checked and hold yourself accountable.

        • Courtney says:

          Cat- there is no foul language. “dam’ is for water storage, like the Hoover Dam. You are thinking of “damn” the curse word. You are holing Michael accountable for nothing. I find it hard to believe that after this entire article, you focused merely on your misunderstanding of the word “dam.”

          • pollywog says:

            I bet Cat was not so ignorant as to think that the word “dam” is bad language. It was the word “lawyer”.

          • 44jab says:

            Cat – Alaskamom & Lorie what foul language?? Regardless of your misunderstanding of the word “dam” (Duhhh) it is not a dirty word and alot more colorful wording could of been used! All of you need to slow down and not be so quick to judge–Our good Lord says not to worry about the sliver of wood in your neighbors eye when your own eye has a beam in it! Your momma must of never told you if you cannot say something nice then dont say anything at all!

        • Zesty says:

          Why censor ourselves because of a fictional character from middle-eastern mythology? Should I be careful not to say bad things about Thor when there’s a lightning storm? Get a grip.

          • Tempest Blue says:

            You bet Zesty. Just keep telling yourself that.

        • DaddyMike says:

          Nothing new here in Oregon.A few years ago one guy was trying to sell large rain barrles that people that people could catch the rain water from their roof. After about a week they came into the printers shop to stop him from selling these barrles. You can still go online and find many here in Portland, but just watch out for the cops. Very Sad.

      • Michele says:

        Amen! So if I open my mouth and let droplets or snowflakes collect is
        that a misdemeanor!!????

      • Bobbie says:

        Did you know that this law has been in effect in Oregon since 1925?

        • daddymike says:

          Bobbie, is like a LOT of people who live in Portland, OR. They just sit around smoking dope or take other drugs. They don;t know what they are talking about. LOL…. Sad but True.

          • Marie says:

            He’s actually telling the truth. Do your research before you toss around accusations.

      • Laura says:

        Finally I see someone invoking Jesus for the right reasons. This is totally crazy, total government abuse.

    • PATRICIA says:

      wash your car, water your veggie & herb gardens, refill your pond, fountains, wash laundry…

    • holmes1151@yahoo.com says:

      Collect all the rain water you can so you can drown these bastards

      • Best comment yet.

      • Randi says:

        Wow…..wow…..and WOW……its all I can say……

      • Amanda says:

        If this site had a LIKE button i would use it lol

        • Pinkness says:

          “LIKE”

      • Ruri says:

        Yes now that would be a great use for that rain water.

      • Mark C says:

        Would have to agree with you there!

    • KountryEdge says:

      They found out by the hovering seeing eyes that they have now watching people. It was on news that is what was used. That they are using the drones for such use along with many other uses to fine illegal activity.

      But yes, I highly feel that this is BS that now our government owns what comes from the clouds? REALLY?!!?!

      This and many other things have gone way to far in our country and to many are sitting by just letting it happen.

      • bebe says:

        Ditto, I feel theyre doing this b/c they want use to drink water theyre poisoning w/ flouride smh sosad..had no idea until recently..like I learned abt this a some minutes ago… its crazy

    • J Logan says:

      Oregon is the only State I know of that has rainwater harvesting restriction as such. Most states encourage harvesting rainwater. See this site for information on all U.S. States.
      http://www.ncsl.org/issues-research/env-res/rainwater-harvesting.aspx#or

    • Jack W. says:

      Neighbors ratted them out for a reward.

    • clyde says:

      to bert RE: how did they know: I put a 10X10 gazebo with one side just under the house gutter over hang to get the extra covered area. The gazebo was just light steel frame with canvas top & mosquito netting for sides. Next I knew i had increased property tax and called the property assesor and inquired if they had come on my property and was told no they were viewing property by satelite and as it appeared attached to house they were increasing my tax because it enlarged my house. With the drones now it will be worse

    • mzaz says:

      they use drones to spy on Americans. Their satellites can zoom in and tell the time on your watch.

  2. Navy Dave says:

    I just got a headache reading that.

    • TacticalFry says:

      Me too Dave, me too. This is upsetting, being a resident of Colorado… I did not know this /:

      • DK says:

        What about snow? Can they nab you with snow? It’s not technically water…. just sayin’

        • suzanne says:

          if the snow is theirs let THEM shovel it!!!

          • Damon says:

            Hah, very good point. Everyone in the state needs to contact the owner of the right on the next heavy fall and demand they come and remove their water from the property. Tell them that you will bill them for your time and use of tools if they prefer ;)

  3. vince says:

    if no one owns the rain, then how does a local government own it. when it touches my property it is mine.

    • Beth says:

      Thank you!!

    • Antira says:

      But remember, you don’t own your property, the Gov. does. So therefore when it touches ‘your’ property it belongs to the gov. Try not paying property tax. See how that goes.

  4. James says:

    There are few things that this present government does that should surprise anyone anymore This is the plan to make sure we always have the haves and the have nots.Making the leaders come to the fold by forcing them to live the same as we do Insurance Pensions and the laws are a good start

    • eboLii says:

      Fof pete sake….this present government don’t have diddley to do with a 1925 law

  5. Galenthor says:

    wtf are they thinking that the state controls the rain? what’s next, thought police? whoever thought this applied to rainfall should be checked into a rubber room for at least a decade… talking about a rules lawyer, fuck…~!

  6. robert skelton says:

    in my defense i was not collecting rain water, your honor. I was detaining it for trespassing, and illegal theft of my land through erosion. Since these folks claim ownership of said water they should be paying me for the storage of, and damages caused by said rainwater during it assault on my property. yeah right lol.

    • TacticalFry says:

      Hahaha you are my kind of thinker, friend. Kill ‘em with their own logic.

    • donna says:

      Now there’s an argument- I like it!!

    • Docopac says:

      Or on the flip side if there is a drought sue the state for not providing the rain therefore causing damage to your property,crops,way of life.

    • THAT is by far the best comment yet!!! I may use that some day. We’ll see how far that goes!

  7. Ron says:

    Well then if the states own the rain that falls from the skies, the next time too much falls and does damage to your property, file a suit against them for the damage ! Then lets watch them squrim ! ;)

    • Cal says:

      I was thinking the same thing! Make the state fix your leaky roof.

  8. Bud says:

    All these government entities do these stupid and illegal things because we let them. We just sit back and shake our head’s, then change the channel on the TV and make some popcorn.

    • stars.n.shamrocks says:

      Agreed.But, people sit by and let it happen because 1. The gov’t controls the television media (therefore, telling you whatever they want you to hear… aka their “truths”); 2. The gov’t puts fluoride into the “public drinking water” which dumbs us down from doing anything about it (I.e. standing up for our rights, starting a revolution, etc…) 3. All of the above is the exact reason they deny you any rights to rain water conservation.. It’s all about gov’t control, sheeple!

      • Not to mention the public school systems pump out dumbed down mindless drones by the millions every year… Another reason I do not have cable, we use our Zerowater filter, and we home school….. So sad

  9. Rob Waller says:

    I was hoping the reason maybe was to do with insect (mosquito) control, but being just because someone already has legal claim to the rain is a head shaker, add rainwater smart people collect to the list of things to be taken “from our cold dead hands”. 

  10. OMG says:

    That is the stupidest thing I have EVER heard !!! In Canada they sell rain barrels so we can collect it !
    The rain falls from heaven…God gives it to us…..nobody OWNS it…duh!

    • debi says:

      thats right, they (government,state,congress, and courts) doesn’t want GOD in thier business they should stay Out of GODs business, its his RAIN.

      • omfg says:

        rain falls from the clouds, not heaven. /facepalm

        • Dante says:

          Well said!

  11. samuel tucker says:

    sure am glad i live in tennessee where here we’re free to live our live in peace and quiet. how come all you sheep let these lords take control of your lives and turned you people into serfs? to lazy to get off your asses and stand up for your selves? GOD pity you fools for letting yourselves be made into slaves. don’t you know that you can vote these masters out of office. get some backbone take back what is yours and live your lives in freedom!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Another Tennessean says:

      Samuel Tucker: if you think TN is “free” of this kind of gov’t stupidity, you’ve not been paying attention to our General Assembly lately, to say nothing of the Boards of Mayors and Aldermen, County Commissions, and other bodies both regional and local who deign to craft legal farces in our state. Ask a business owner, a farmer, a tradesman, and a state employee what kinds of unnecessary, ass-backwards, stupid regulations they have to observe in executing their daily tasks in their various careers. Our state legislature is just as corrupt and controlling as some of these others. Tennesseans are usually just too busy trying to make ends meet to notice, until it’s too late.

    • Jim Hunter says:

      Oh Boy Sam, Where so I start? You live in Tennessee which is the ONLY state in which the TSA is DRIVING YOUR HIGHWAY’S and pulling people over like the Gustapo, Hardly a free State in my opinion…On the other hand, I do respect your passion for Your State, It is beautiful…

  12. ltcray says:

    How long , people… how long are we going to put up with this over reaching, this tyranny? How long before we remember we have hind legs and get up to do something to stop these tyrants?
    There’s a reason the “powers-that-be” are determined to disarm all Americans. It’s not for our safety, it’s for their ease in robbing us of our remaining rights and their success in their Socialist coup!

    • bebe says:

      yup i agree, thnk goodness for jesus.. none of this surprises him … just shows his coming ..is wel.. coming lol…and satan is just going crazy

    • Jeff says:

      Since 1925 when the law was made

  13. Rodd Constable says:

    ok if they own the water ..is the case of a flood due to rains your home gets washed away the goverment will pay ? the water did the damage they “own” it !! is that not how it works ?????

    • Ricky says:

      Why when there is a flood and you go for assistance either from government,or insurance company’s their excuse is “that’s an act of god”.

  14. lawson says:

    Make sure to vote all the nuts out of office…vote vote vote!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. Sstottlar says:

    So does this mean we can blame droughts on the government in those states????? That would seem to be just as ridiculous!

  16. Steve warner says:

    I think the government who brought this rediculous law should be disbanded immediately. Sounds like the deville himself is running the state

  17. Morgan says:

    The government takes just a little here, then a little there so that the average person never notices, or just assumes that they have the right to do so. Cause hey they did this that means that this over here must be ok! Load of freakin crap…

  18. dee says:

    What are you all communists? You think no one should own land either? You got to pay to play people. If you’re out there surviving on your own you’re not dependant on employment for survival. If no one is dependant then there’s no one to do the all the work. With no work there’s no economy. We can’t have that. So go mortgage a house, finance a car and get a damn job.

    • Justin says:

      Little extreme dee.. This is one person, we aren’t talking about the entire state of Oregon becoming self sufficient, therefore I doubt the economy is going to take the hit you’re imagining. If you’re that worried about it then you go mortgage your house again, finance another car and get a second job, then maybe the economy will get back on track. However, I’m willing to bet you don’t want to do that. Though by now I’m sure you caught the flaw in your logic-”If no one is dependent then there is no one to do [the] all the work.” if no one is dependent then there wouldn’t be a need for anyone to do anyone else’s work because, well, we wouldn’t be dependent on anyone but ourselves…

      Also, the adjective dependent is -ent not -ant.

      • dee says:

        I’m sorry Mr. Marx that you think rain “belongs to the common man.” This is a free country and no one can tell us we can’t own land or rain. If you want everything for free you should move to Russia.

        • Justin says:

          It’s Mr. Maresh, you were close though.

          Where are you coming up with the garbage you’re typing? I never said the “rain belongs to the common man” I never said it belonged to anyone. I also never said I wanted everything for free, now you’re just making things up.

          • shaun says:

            I get what he’s saying. The commoditization of basic, essential natural resources. If the government (mafia force) can find a way to control access to anything they will sell it and tax it and then force markets to it. I bet the bottled water industry would love the government granting permits on rain collection. It’s precisely Marx’ fundemental issue with capitalism. Government creates a helpless dependency by restricting access to soil, water, sun, air, seeds, etc forcing everyone to go into debt for the most basic needs and thus forced by proxy to work for wages to live. Then call it a free country over and over until everyone believes it to the point they will kill for their “liberty.”

            Controlling access to rainwater should be no surprise to anyone. You’ve been comfortable with these sort of outrageous things all your life. You’re so used to them you don’t even realize it.

    • Denise says:

      I don’t know what you are smoking or popping but that is so completely not what is being said here. This is about rain falling on land owned by an individual and the law saying they can’t claim it for their own use on the land it fell on. Bottom line is the government is trying to control water so they can control the people more.

  19. fugazi says:

    Same thing, here in Greece!!!.. also agriculture organizations told to farmers that they should report all springs or other water sources (wells) on their farms.

  20. Prepping Preacher says:

    this issue is yet another example of just how far out of control evey level of government is in this country… “they” will do something, in some location which will spark immediate negative reactionary response and “they” will be left wondering what happened and how… all “they” will need to do is sit down and read the foolishness “they” foist onto the American People…

  21. Montana rancher says:

    July 28, 2012 at 10:01 AM
    This isn’t as nefarious as it seems. Most water laws are to protect the down stream users who have legitimate water rights. Ninja ponds often times are constructed without proper materials and no erosion control which sends sediments downstream causing contaminated water and filling up legitimate ponds with sediments. The dams are not structurally sound and can wash out in severe storms causing terrible problems downstream. Also ponds increase water loss through evaporation so people with legitimate rights downstream get less water for legitimate uses of irrigation and recreation.
    I do not work for the government but do live on a year round stream that is fed mostly through snow melt and rain, and had a similar problem with a upstream neighbor building a pond. The permitting process through the state protects downstream users from erosion problems and water theft. I live in Montana where water law may differ from Oregon but here a water right gives a person the right to use a specific amount of water and that water becomes the users property, anyone that diverts water outside the water right system is stealing property from the down stream users. The state regulating water use is one of the best uses of state authority I can think of. Otherwise the guy with the biggest hose the farthest upstream can literally destroy generations old farms below through water theft.

    • Water wright says:

      So what you’re really saying is that there are just too many people now?

      • Nekko says:

        Yes, there are too many people. Our earth is overpopulated as it is, and religious schmucks and welfare-leeches continue popping out babies, thus putting more pressure on the ecosystem to provide for us in a way that it can’t handle. Case in point: there isn’t enough water, and if everyone collected rain in a barrel, farms farther downstream wouldn’t be able to irrigate and their crops would wither.

        • Beth says:

          That’s funny, I’m pretty sure the population of the earth would fit inside the city limits of jacksonville fl. Standing room only, granted, but they would fit. If it’s crowded where you are, move! If you feel the earth is so over-crowded, why are you still on it? You wouldn’t deny life to yourself, but you would love to deny someone else what you would never willingly give up. Liberalism in a nutshell.

  22. Dark Space says:

    I initially was horrified, but after some Google research and images, it sounds like he is not just capturing rainwater and the “snow runoff” is disputed to be coming out of a stream that does feed into their basin. His set up is not just a few rain barrels either. I couldn’t find a clear description of the “snow runoff” versus diversion from a near by creek to determine if the municipality had a valid argument, but I can see where one might exist. It does seem like the issue at hand was not the rain water, but the diverted/snow runoff water. It seems like that would be pretty easy to prove with one little rubber ducky – put it in your stream upstream of him, and if it ends up in his pond then the two parties need to come up with a solution. Jail seems extreme in either case.

  23. A friend mentioned something interesting when I posted this article. If the rain belongs to the city, then whenever there is damage, flooding, etc. from rain/snow, then the cost of repairing said damage would rest with the city and the municipality since the rain/snow belongs to them.

  24. JK Potts says:

    stop paying taxes….destroy your ssn…learn to live off the land

    • Camper 2 says:

      Are you off the grid and providing your own power to run your computer??

  25. Julie says:

    Not only do I agree with what everyone else has had to say but I just want to say this is just unbelievably insane & heartbreaking. What is this world coming to? Alot of ppl collect rainwater for watering gardens. Its so much better than the water that is full of chlorine & other stuff. How the hell can they send someone to jail for collecting something that has no price. Rain is from GOD & I dont think he would approve of ppl being sent to jail for collecting something HE sent us. I pray hard for this messed up world we live in. These ppl should all be put in jail just for coming up with this law.

    • dee says:

      Land is from GOD too. Try finding an used piece of it to grow your food on and see what happens. Are you outraged over having to pay massive fees or go to prison just to survive on GODS earth? I bet not.

  26. Telula says:

    I depend on rainwater to water my garden. My outdoor tap isn’t connected to the water line, and we are patiently waiting for our landlords to hook it up. Without the few buckets of rainwater, and the water collected from my dehumidifyer (about 2 1/2 gallons a day) I have to borrow water from my neighbours. They are wonderful and generous neighbours, and everyone in town pays a flat rate for water usage, so we aren’t running up their water bill, but we don’t want to be dependant on them for water.

  27. MidwestMomma says:

    Read Blue Gold by Clive Cussler.

  28. Ken Christensen says:

    Agenda 21…

  29. Megakarl says:

    I hate to be the dissenting opinion again here, but the problem wasn’t that he was collecting rainwater, the problem was he built a series of dams, one of which was 15ft high, that was preventing water from flowing into a creek that is owned by the city of medford. Oregon law plainly states that it is illegal to build any reservoir or earthen dam that prevents the natural flow of water off of your property without getting a water use permit….which is pretty standard practice for water rights in every state in the US. Harrington Applied for the permits in 2007 and was denied, did it anyway and was given 3 years probation. After 3 years he applied again and was denied because the dams he was attempting to build were in a natural spillway acting as a tributary to the creek. He ignored the states decision and built them a second time, warranting a stiffer penalty.

    As a side note, Oregon does have a provision in this law providing exemption to collect rainwater that falls on the house or driveway, making rainwater collection perfectly legal. Which, again, is pretty standard practice in most states.

    Honestly guys, there are a lot more legitimate things to be getting upset about, we don’t need to make something out of nothing.

    • craigevil says:

      Exactly it is not like he was collecting rainwater in barrels that fell off his roof. The title of the article is misleading. He built damns and diverted the water after being denied permits.

  30. kevin daye says:

    i would love to see them trying to ban me from collecting or drinking rain water, if you know your rights then you know that what is on your land is yours & gives you more entitlement than any government.

  31. TjBronson says:

    They will have to kill me first before I will comply with ANY LAW that restricts me from collecting rain water. Ill collect it Ill drink it and Ill do what I want with it! And if ANY LAW ENFORCEMENT of ANY KIND wants to go to war with me over it, I will be more than happy to accommodate them.. They have NO RIGHT restricting anyone from water they do not have any control over before its in reservoirs. We have the right to the rain! The government and its agencies DO NOT HAVE ANY RIGHTS restricting us from it.. If this doesnt get you off your asses and start to rethink our future..well then I guess youre all dead people walking!!

  32. Fury says:

    Lets us all remember this and the next time it rains and there is flood damage in that area EVERYONE should sue the crap out of the Medford Water Commission since it was their product that did all the damage. :)

    • Elijah says:

      Agreed

  33. Mike says:

    Yep, the water from the Colorado River does not belong to Colorado, it belongs to the Southern California Aquaduct project… downstream.
    Without an agriculture permit, you cannot place a barrel from your roof downspout to gather water for your garden or anything else…

    Time for underground cisterns with hidden / buried piping.

    • Stephanie says:

      Mike, it’s time for EVERYONE to openly collect rainwater. No hiding, no nothing….if everyone disobeys, what are they going to do? Not a damn thing.

      Defy.

  34. Stephanie says:

    It’s been “illegal” in Colorado for…well, forever now. This has NOTHING to do with ANYTHING but paying for your water, which includes taxes.

    I’ve been collecting rainwater for decades now, as do many people here. The more rainwater we use, the less our water bill is, the less taxes we pay and THAT is what it’s about.

    It’s also “illegal” to empty your washing machine in your back yard, drain your dishwater outside and bathwater outside. All of which many of us do with ZERO regard for this “law”……

    I suggest EVERYONE use rainwater as much as possible. To HELL with these bullshit bogus laws.

    When the gov’t says “You do not have a right to the water falling from the sky, the water company does” well, the government and water company can go get fucked.

    • ck says:

      Like! If it fell on the land I own it is a product of my land.

      I believe the individual water rights are only pertain to water in the canal or otherwise constructed irrigation system even if easement is in place.

      • ck says:

        If you don’t like people using the rain you see as yours (ie downstream water rights owners) get smart and move to where water does fall from the sky LOL not the arid desert of California or any other arid climate. (ie it is not an ecosystem that is ideal for heavy population density or water intensive industries)

  35. Eco Joe says:

    I call mine an “Erosion Damage Mitigation System”, or EDMS for short. Erosion control is legal.

  36. Eco Joe says:

    So, say in one these “illegal” states that “own” the water, my house get flooded by “their” water, can I sue them? If “their” rain comes in my open window and ruins my sofa – can I collect damages from that state? Of course not. Why? Because it’s all alot of BS by folks who own alot of guns. They like playing with their guns – that’s all.
    We have no Rights – period.

  37. Dawn says:

    Wow its unbelievable! Not no free country anymore, I’m about to move In the woods. Totally pisses me off! The rain does NOT belong to you!

  38. J. Contreras says:

    That’s enough to make you wonder who’s really running the show here… the government or the people… it might even be the privately owned banks operating under the entire system itself.

  39. Melanie says:

    OK definately bizzare.The ONLY thing about collecting rain water that bothers me is water pollution — you probably want to test your rain water these days, who knows what kind ofjunk might be in it.

  40. Amy says:

    As of May 2010 under Senate bill 32 collecting rainwater is completely legal.

  41. Amy says:

    Sorry mean to say in Utah as of 5/2010 Senate bill 32 legalizes the collection of rainwater

  42. Jess says:

    What other states have these water rules?

  43. Bobby says:

    This is too easy. Post a no dumping sign and research the laws related to dumping and abandoned materials. If he doesn’t own the water than whoever does is dumping it without permission onto his building and property. I would serve them notice to cease and desist dumping this material or else yield ownership rights of the water. Pretty simple matter really. If someone consistently dumps a bag of Benjamin Franklins on my yard, I will start picking them up and using them. Why should it be any different with water. After all if you buy water at a convenience store in 20oz increments, it costs twice as much as gasoline.

    • Chuck says:

      Awesome!

  44. Camper 2 says:

    You all need to go back and read Megakari’s comment to understand the situation between the landowner and the city of Medford, OR.

  45. Dianne says:

    hmm, hubby just set up a rain barrel last night, wonder how my neighbors will react to that. I have had them threaten me over my compost pile (I fixed that with a compost container no more problems). I have had the police coming and taking pictures of my BACK PORCH b/c neighbors said I had trash on it (1 piece of furniture that needed to go), just chairs and coolers and th grill for heaven’s sake! Where is the freedom we have to pursue life and happiness?? Oh yeah, we only have that with God NOT GOVERNMENT!

  46. Paithoes says:

    Wait, wait. The state is saying that rain is owned by them and the Medford Water Commission? Sweet! everytime you have a rain-related car accident, damage to your house, or are inconvenienced by rain, Sue the socks off of them. That should also effectively remove any act of god clause in insurance do to them claiming ownership. Slip in the mud? No problem, just sue the state and water company for medical expenses, lost wages, personal damages, and mental trauma.

  47. JackP says:

    Think about this. If the state can claim ownership of rainwater or water in the air, then what next will they claim. Claim ownership of the oxygen in the air? A breathing tax next?

  48. Amanda says:

    Start a petition people get as many signatures as you can to say it violates your right as a land owner to collect water on your own land. Send it to Washington.

  49. Maeve says:

    Are you kidding me? Here in Ohio we have rain barrels connected to the downspouts to collect rain for watering our plants. Since when did government own what falls from the sky? I’m beginning to think my husband who came from a communist country is right. This is exactly what his life was like there, every time we hear something like this, he says we better wake up in America, don’t think it can’t happen! Slowly taking all our rights away. There will only be rich and poor, no middle class.

  50. Just how arrogant humans can be to Mother Earth, First we almost kill her with pollution just because arrogant corporate humans know just poring waste in to the waterways with out treating the waste water will make them more profit, and now arrogant government humans have clamed to own her water because mere common humans are not smart enough to manage water on their own ,The Arrogant government humans make more legislation, to tell the mere common humans how to manage water something we have done since humans first appeared. When are the majority of humans going to say “ENOUGH”?

  51. daniel says:

    PEOPLE IN CHINA ARE READING THIS AND GOING I THOUGHT WE HAD IT BAD BUt JEESE!!!!!!!!!! once again from England we all find this out of this world and our police would just feel stupid and pathetic for trying arrest someone reusing rainwater.

  52. daniel says:

    By the way again sorry how the fuck is your govement controlling!!!!!!!!!!! whether or not you can reuse rainwater like its a normal thing to do but the whole idea of having an NHS (national health service) they have convinced tones of you this is a sign of communion and really bad idea when it clearly is the way forward. its right tones of Americans have been stupidly easily influences by massively corrupt ideas.

    • carvee says:

      IF THE WATER BELONGS TO THE GOVERNMENT THEN THEY ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE DAMAGE THEIR WATER CAUSES ON PRIVATE PROPERTY DURING FLOODS AND ROOF LEAKS.

  53. Don says:

    Utah attempted to set it right with SB32, Rainwater Harvesting, in March of 2010. The legislation was incorporated into UT Code (73-3-1.5) but the kicker is that a) you are limited to either a 2500 gallon underground or two 100 gallon above ground containers and b) you have to REGISTER with the State Engineer via a website (http://waterrights.utah.gov/forms/rainwater.asp), which still shows that the gov’t, not you, owns the water. I happen to have a water right that came with my rural property, so I don’t think I have to register but I’m still finding out that information.

    • richard holmes says:

      If we are lucky they will drown in rainwater that was collected in someone’s pond.

  54. gomer pyle says:

    So if these states are claiming that rainwater belongs to them and that they own it, then next time it rains and you have any kind of water damage to your home or personal belongings sue the state. YOUR rainwater, trespassed onto MY property and caused damage to my property, ie. flooding in my basement, erosion to my land, etc. Hit them where it hurts, their wallets.

  55. Mama Z says:

    Very good comments-reminds me of George Orwell’s “Animal Farm” where one stupid rule just led to another-let’s be smarter than that!

  56. Biff Splifferson says:

    Average cost to hold an inmate in jail per day in Oregon is $62.24 x 30 days is $1867.20. don’t forget court cost. lawyers fee’s, wage’s lost during trial and jail time.

  57. Tina says:

    I live in Utah and as of May of 2010 collecting rainwater is no longer illegal.

    • tina says:

      Sorry, March of 2010…saw a previous post that has the details. lol

  58. Denise says:

    Possession is 9/10 of the law. It’s on my land, it’s mine. Then they come at you with imminent domain…

  59. country says:

    wow really what the hell i love where i live but come on the u.s is going to hell in a hand basket i live in California and shit here is crazy so i can guess it is worse or just as bad other places . i still cant believe it rainwater….lol smh

  60. danny boy says:

    dear rain owner I like to know where do I send you the bill of my new roof your rain damged it and I”ll like you to pay for it .

    • Rockchuck says:

      Yeah, Love it!! That’s the spirit.

  61. nick says:

    this just makes me want to collect rainwater as a slap in the face to these ridiculous laws.

  62. Anon Fakename says:

    ..Of course collecting water is evil, goy!

  63. Noah says:

    Someone should just take these morons to court and ask the Judge: “Judge, do you own a deck… Do you have chairs on that deck… When it rains does water collect in the seat of that chair… Oh, we’ll then Judge you are breaking the law of collecting rainwater that is not yours and you do not have permission to own that water. You should be thrown in jail for a month or two to serve as an example to others, and fined a couple thousand dollars for illegal water collection! Oh wait there’s more, that doesn’t even cover the bonus fines for the water collected in your pool. Then do you knowingly swim in that pool that contains government water… FOR FREE?

  64. Tee says:

    They want money. Money is what it amounts to. We had city water in the house in a town in Florida. Well water in the back yard. Minimum charge for city water and sewage was $50 a month. So to save money I began filling the washing machine with well water with a hose, and also would occasionally use the well water to flush the toilets. After a few months of just being billed the $50 minimum the town threatened to condemn my well. Its all about money and what they think they own.

  65. ron flinders says:

    If this is the case, it should be mandatory that the government be held responsible for any rain damage on your property. Make it mandatory that they, the government limit the amount of rainfall allowed on our property during the rainy season. They should be held financially liable if accumulation is over 3″ during any one rain storm.
    This sounds just about as stupid as the government owning the rain.

  66. CashMcCall says:

    The legal question over rainwater generally depends on how the State Common law defines water rights as Riparian water rights or Prior appropriation water rights. Riparian rights are given by direct contact with a river or stream. Appropriative is a system of distribution which has no association with direct contact with a river or stream but is based on best use.

    Rainwater that would fall on your ground in Reparian States would say the water is yours. In Appropriative states, the water that falls down belongs to the Appropriative distribution NOT the individual on the land. Thus rainwater collection is looked at as interfering with the Appropriative rights of others who have a right to that water’s absorption into the aquifer. Colorado is an Appropriative State.

    That said, local Nazi Gov will still mess with you if you live in a Reparian state by claiming that collection of rainwater will cause mosquito breeding. Gov need only provide any mindless “rational” purpose to stick their Nazi flag on your property. You vote these socialist into office so you get what you deserve.

    Reparian water rights allows hoarding and Appropriative attempts to prevent hoarding. Thus where water is scarce west of the Mississippi, Appropriative rights exist and east of the Mississippi Reparian is more popular. Reparian is Capitalism and Appropriative is Socialism. Personally I prefer Piratism and do what I want but of course I’m an anarchist and all you nice people probably wouldn’t like my methods of obtaining water for my garden.The Wild West was full of water wars. I prefer the Wild West System.

  67. The one says:

    People WAKE UP!!! Government, you can call them that I don’t. They are not there for you or for our country. They have proven that time and time again. It does not matter who you vote for it will be the same ending. Water rights is just one of thousands of issues that are way out of control. The only thing that matters is how take more of the 1% they so generously let us work our assets off for. Everyday they pay millions of our money to lawyers who spend all their time trying to find ways to get more of the 1%.The so call supreme court decided to let anyone with unlimited supplies of money to decide what happens to our laws,eviremental regulations, what drugs are legal or not. They can even destroy our ground water with flacking.Demecrats, Republicans are all after the same thing.Yes they disagree on things to make you really think theyre in it for us. It is just to side track us away from the things that really matter.Such as why in the last 30years they haven been using the Constitution for toilet paper They decide who runs for president not us. our rights disappear more and more every day. MONEY is all they care about howy of our rights have they taken and nobody does anything its a joke who you gonna votefor da da da it don’t matter wake up

    • Rockchuck says:

      To “The one”: Go back to sleep. I think someone is a ‘little’ paranoid.

      • Or maybe you should wake up Chuck. The only thing wrong with Theone’s comment is incorrect spelling.

  68. rafael says:

    u dudes be on drugs

  69. Lorri says:

    This is outrageous!!! What is the world coming to? The rain isn’t owned by anyone and it should be useable to anyone who wants it. How crazy is the government and how crazy are people for allowing this to take place???

  70. Vanessa says:

    Hqueso
    I love how you think! Sue me for collecting rainwater?! How about a countersue for letting your rainwater fall on my property, into my reservoirs!

  71. George Bjornson says:

    If the govt. considers rain water harvesting belonging to them then they should be responsible for any flooding or rain water damage to your house;I would sue the govt. , in these states for rain water damage…that should cool their heels, also it’s probably unconstitutional.
    Personally I would take all the politicians who started this and the Judges who allowed such garbage to be passed be sent to the Pillories and put in stocks so that the people could throw rotten eggs at them and then douse them in harvested rain water so they come to their senses.

  72. Sam says:

    Recently I’ve been hearing about the California drought situation, which has been a problem for a while, I guess, and that there are some who have water reserves collected that they’ve been selling off to help combat the problem. Cool. I’m a native resident of Washington State-the western part, which is to say the really, really wet part of Washington-it rains A LOT here. I’m not sure what the figures would be, but if the rainfall that collects into our raingutters was to be diverted into collection areas specifically to combat these drought situations, that seems to make sense to me. I’m not sure where the private sector ends and the state government kicks in with regards to maintaining and regulating such an operation, but I doubt such an operation would have any impact on the natural balance, in other words, our rivers would flow just as high as they ever do..
    In the end, it’s all about the water. Most al cities and towns in this country are where they are because of where the water was. Hear, most of the time, it’s in abundance, we shouldn’t continue to wast it..

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