Private property rights battle: Court rules Missouri couple must plant grass, even though wife is allergic

government solve all problems
From Kansas City.com: A Missouri couple decided to turn their entire yard into a flower garden.  It turns out, that was against a city ordinance, which says half of residents’ yards must be grass turf.
But the wife is allergic to grass. Now a federal judge has ruled: tough.
So Janice and Carl Duffner are vowing to fight on.
Their city of St. Peters, near St. Louis, put the Duffners on notice that they must comply with the law. The Duffners said at the time they filed their civil rights action in late 2016 they were subject to penalties of $180,000 and 20 years in jail for non-compliance.
“If the city is permitted to impose draconian fines and imprisonment simply because a citizen chooses to cultivate on their own private property lawful, harmless plants of their own choosing instead of a potentially harmful plant of the government’s choosing, there is no longer any principled limit to the government’s control over either the property or the owners,” the Duffners’ complaint stated.
The Duffners bought their home in 2002 and began landscaping that included planting beds, two small ponds, pathways and seating areas. The St. Peters Board of Aldermen adopted the turf ordinance in 2008. At some point, an unidentified person complained to the city that the Duffners had no grass.
The Duffners asked for an exemption but were denied. Instead, the Board of Adjustment in 2014 told them to plant at least 5 percent of their property with grass. They refused.
In its response to the federal complaint, the city noted that the Duffners had first gone to circuit court in St. Charles County and had lost there because they had failed to exhaust their administrative remedies. After a mixed ruling from the Missouri Court of Appeals, the Duffners turned to federal court.
U.S. District Judge John A. Ross (appointed by Obama) last week ruled for the city, saying the Duffners “have failed to identify a fundamental right that is restricted by the Turf Grass Ordinance.” The judge said the Supreme Court has held that “aesthetic considerations constitute a legitimate government purpose.”
Ross also said the Duffners failed to demonstrate that the penalties for violating the turf ordinance are excessive and contrary to the Eighth Amendment.
The Duffners’ attorney, David Roland of the Freedom Center of Missouri, told the Riverfront Times that the couple will appeal.
“My estimation is that this is one of the most important property rights cases in the country right now,” he said. “We’re going to go all hands on deck.”
DCG

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Dr. Eowyn
Admin

Un-friggin’-believable. Did America become the Soviet Union?

Clownzilla
Guest

Tar & feather that commie judge, then tar & feather the rest of the commies and their sympathizers. We are dangerously close to a breaking point and I will feel no sorrow for the federal parasites that happen to be the objects of the citizenry’s anger.

Diane Wilson
Guest

What the heck is wrong with the city of St. Peters? Since when did it become a crime in America NOT to have grass on your property? I hope these homeowners end up owning the city.

gitardood
Guest

Again, if the property is registered with any govt level, the legal owner is the govt, and you are just equity owner. Again, In the US June 5 1933, HJR 192 was passed after the US was bankrupted by the staged depression (by the global banksters), and the new collateral for owed $, became all property REGISTERED with govt, INCLUDING YOUR PROGENY and of course you, as most people don’t understand the Vital Statistics birth registration generating a birth certificate is (A) generated thus owned by the govt authority (B) not your birth being registered, but rather that of a… Read more »

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TrailDust
Editor
TrailDust

Every time people elect liberals they get this result.

chemtrailssuck
Guest

If she’s allergic to grass, try hemp instead. 😉
Are they in one of those commie inspired ‘planned communities’?
Those places are pretty bad. Though, I saw in my old ‘hood a cop posting a notice on a lady’s door (her lawn hadn’t been mowed and was about 12″ high). It’s a slippery slope, people say well that way the whole place won’t look junky. True, but that’s the road to hell, isn’t it?

Dave
Editor
Dave

Commie-lib goobermints do not like the concept of ‘private property,’ as it tends to fly in the face of their precious collectivist/globalist leanings.
Sad to say, but that is the Amerika we live in today.

Glenn47
Guest
Glenn47

Sounds like their yard is very nice, ponds, flowers, paths. Most likely nicer than most yards. Are they registered as Republicans?
I would take lots of pictures and neighbor’s opinions and present them at the next city meeting and take lots of people with me. Stand up and push back.

stlonginus
Guest

Yuri Bezmenov: Deception Was My Job
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3qkf3bajd4

Eli
Guest

As far as I’m concerned, we are indeed already the Soviet Union. The police state is here. Things like traffic stops are nothing more than means to ensure we are compliant slaves, all while the Court system ensures that the Bill of Rights is a Bill of Lies. They don’t follow them. But we must obey. There is time coming soon when we will be asked to obey, and will comply, only to realize we are being boarded onto trains. I think we all know what will lie at the end. THEN we will all wish we had gone down… Read more »

Glenn47
Guest
Glenn47

What kind of a judge and jury would condemn a person to prison for a non crime? They committed no crime against society nor did any damage.
I think their yard looks lovely. Very Peaceful.

Eli
Guest

It’s as Gitardood has said. We have only privileges since they have essentially made us their slaves. So of course they ignore the laws. The US does not exist as we sheeple know it. That is the means by which we are blinded to obedience, sure someone somewhen will change it.
When in fact such people never get the chance, or die, or are crushed fighting a system of extraordinary power and scope.

Alma
Member
Alma

Say, make’m happy, plant GRASS, the real thing, hoards will parade in front of the property!!!

Christine A Hall
Guest

If they’re gonna be imprisoned for 20+ years at least make it for something REAL! Real GRASS!!! Not some stupid law that was never stated to be RETROACTIVE. Yes, I noticed the dates in the column, of the first planting and the new law, since when do they have purview over existing situations, unless the law is worded to make it retroactive? Pursue a “LIFE, liberty and pursuit of happiness” defense – if this lady is exposed every week when her husband is forced to mow the stupid crud, she could be so sensitized to her allergies that she could… Read more »

NowhereMan
Guest
NowhereMan

The city council and corrupt judge need to be smacked with the common sense stick. Stay the F off of my property, I will do what I please with it.