Better know where the hi water mark is

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Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby phutch30 » Fri Mar 01, 2013 11:55 am

Senate OKs fines for trespassing
Great Falls Tribune, 2-27-13
The Montana Senate passed a bill Wednesday giving landowners the option of seeking civil penalties for trespassing violations, which a Great Falls senator argued could be used to intimidate sportsmen and sportswomen to discourage “corner crossings.”
But Sen. Frederick “Eric” Moore, R-Miles City, said there’s a need for a civil option because, under current law, the only remedy for landowners is criminal trespassing involving law enforcement — and only if there is property damage.
Moore said the bill, which passed 27-23, would protect private property. The legislation will be considered in the House now.
It creates a civil penalty of at least $1,500 for a person who trespasses and no criminal conviction would be required in order for landowners to pursue the civil action. Photographs could be used as evidence of a civil trespass.
The legislation, Moore added, will free up peace officers to concentrate on areas where their efforts are better spent. As an example, he noted eastern Montana, where he said law enforcement is pressed thin because of an influx of calls related to growth due to oil development.
Sen. Anders Blewett, D-Great Falls, unsuccessfully introduced an amendment to Moore’s bill that would have given an exception to the civil penalty to people who cross corners where public and private land intersect.
Corner crossings involve stepping across the airspace of private property from public land to reach more public land.
The practice has become a hot-button issue at the Legislature with hunters, wearing orange vests, converging on the Capitol earlier this month to lobby for a bill that would have made the practice legal.
They said legalizing corner crossing would up open thousands of acres of public land that currently can’t be accessed.
That bill failed in the House, where opponents argued corner crossing is trespassing with legalization an infringement on private property rights.
Blewett argued Wednesday in the Senate that it’s an open question in Montana whether corner crossing is technically a trespass.
Currently, the state defers to law enforcement with respect to enforcing trespassing at corner crossings with most agencies taking the position that they won’t prosecute,
Blewett said. Moore’s bill, Blewett said, will allow landowners to pursue $1,500 fines against people who cross corners, which could be used as a “serious club” to intimidate sportsmen and sportswomen who try to access public land at the crossings.
Lawmakers, he said, should do everything in their power to make sure sportsmen and sportswomen have access to public lands.
“I think that’s bad policy,” Blewett said of Moore’s bill.
“This is a taking of private property rights,” John Brenden, R-Scobey, said of Blewett’s amendment allowing corner crossings.
Art Wittich, R-Bozeman, said he wasn’t sure he liked Moore’s bill but said he hated Blewett’s corner crossing amendment, saying it wasn’t relevant to the trespassing legislation.
“It may be good politics to debate this corner crossing matter,” Wittich said. “It’s really bad law.”
The amendment granting the exception to the civil trespassing charge was defeated 31-19.
....its like taking x-lax when you have a bad cough. It wont clear up your lungs, but it sure stops you from coughing
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby Troutslayer » Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:12 pm

Sure has been a disappointing session for sportsmen. I can see more landowners ignorant of their own property lines out there with cameras intimidating law abiding sportsmen to keep them out of "their" rivers or USFS land. As if it wasn't bad enough already.
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby huntfishnv » Fri Mar 01, 2013 9:47 pm

Im going to have to read more about this, but from this article it sounds like... THIS SUCKS!
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby 2point » Fri Mar 01, 2013 10:48 pm

$1500 for walking on somebody's land. Jehovahs beware.
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby deathfrombelow » Sat Mar 02, 2013 12:11 am

looks like www.huntinggpsmaps.com is going to be more helpful
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby PTROOFER FTFOWLER » Sat Mar 02, 2013 8:17 am

Not even sure why a honest sportsman would worry about this. So if a person trespasses they can face a $1500 fine? Good, I'm all for it. I can't tell you how many times I have ran into someone else on land that they didn't have permission to hunt on. I have driven out into the middle of a guys spread of over 150 full body goose decoys to find out who he was because the landowner had told me I was the only one who was supposed to be on his land and had the guy run up to my truck all pissed off. When I asked him whose land he was on, he had no idea. Said he had been watching the geese using the field and never saw anyone hunting in it so figured he could head out. I have a dozen floating duck deeks that I acquired when I walked back into a warm water pond that I hunt and found two guys and there son from Minnesota set up in my spot. Seems they had been hunting the river a mile away and were tired of watching all the ducks hit the pond, so they picked up and walked across private land to set up on the pond. I suggested they leave there decoys to expediate there withdrawl from the private property, they agreed that seemed like the best thing to do.

In today world with all the gps advantages we have to know where we are at, avoiding a trespassing fine is simple, don't trespass.
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby Troutslayer » Sat Mar 02, 2013 1:58 pm

Note- my hot lawyer wife says that there is no way in hell this can be upheld.
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby PTROOFER FTFOWLER » Sat Mar 02, 2013 5:18 pm

Troutslayer wrote:Note- my hot lawyer wife says that there is no way in hell this can be upheld.


Pics or it didn't happen
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby OGblackcloud » Sat Mar 02, 2013 6:31 pm

:lol3: :lol3:
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby huntfishnv » Sat Mar 02, 2013 9:15 pm

It's more the high water mark that I'm worried about, not someones farm or ranch land. I'd just hate to be floating, stop and start fishing or pull out and eat lunch and maybe it's someones land and be fined 1500 dollars.
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby phutch30 » Sun Mar 03, 2013 10:08 am

The above was the point of my post or like when someone walks across an island with decoys or such to set up.

Just a heads up-GPS's with th mapping program dont show where the hi-water mark is, they show private right to the waterline.
....its like taking x-lax when you have a bad cough. It wont clear up your lungs, but it sure stops you from coughing
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby Lawdog » Thu Mar 07, 2013 10:07 am

On the one hand, paying a fine is better than a criminal conviction. Some of the impetus for this and some other bills is the state public defender is claiming poverty at having to defend various misdemeanors. They are advocating for making several crimes civil in nature. Theft, trespassing, certain traffic offenses. No public defender needed when there is no penalty of jail = supposed money savings. Of course, the Justice Courts will lose a major funding mechanism, so don't be so sure this will pass. Also, if you're a victim of a theft, and it's a small amount, say under $1500, and it's no longer a crime, good luck enforcing the "penalty" against the person who victimized you. I really don't see what could go wrong with this plan. :no:
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby pmahler » Sat Mar 09, 2013 6:48 pm

Hot lawyer wife?

I agree with PTRoofer, know where you're supposed to be hunting & walking
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby wickedmfer » Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:36 am

You should know where you are at all times... agreed, but land locking public land is BS and that's what this law is about. If you can't cross corners then the state should buy the land 3' on each side of private to allow access to the public.
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Re: Better know where the hi water mark is

Postby quackpipe » Sun Apr 14, 2013 9:52 am

I think I paid 80$ for hunting big game on private property with out permission. Short money for a chance at a trophy. Its a financial decision each must make. Nobody owns wildlife so I see no ethical issue in shooting animals on the land you rent from the government.
Let the bullshit begin.
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