Explore The NRA Universe Of Websites

APPEARS IN Legal & Legislation

Florida Alert! Tell Gov. Scott SWFWMD (Swiftmud) Should be Abolished

Friday, February 12, 2016

 

 

DATE: February 12, 2016
TO:  USF & NRA Members and Friends
FROM:  Marion P. Hammer
  USF Executive Director
  NRA Past President


How would you feel if a bullying state agency decided to take your property and destroy you?

The South West Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD -- commonly called Swiftmud) is an out-of-control rogue state agency engaged in a malicious and contrived 40-year effort to shut down the Skyway Trap and Skeet Range in St. Petersburg.

It is important to know that this issue is not about lead or water pollution. The site has been cleaned up and the lead has been removed.  Further,  NO LEAD shot is used on the range -- Skyway Trap & Skeet Club prohibits the use of lead shot pellets on their range. Only steel shot is used and it is not a considered a pollutant or contaminant.

For 71 years Skyway Trap and Skeet Club has owned this property and has operated this non-profit private range and business on that property.  This range was there years before SWFWMD (Swiftmud) was even created.

In 1975, SWFWMD sued Skyway and under eminent domain "took" the section Skyway's land that was the drop zone for shot pellets.  Even though the Court allowed SWFWMD to take Skyway's property,  the Court obviously recognized what Swiftmud intended to do so the Court granted Skyway a "perpetual right and easement to utilize the property as a drop zone or fallout zone for expanded shotgun ammunition." 

In 2000,  SWFWMD again sued Skyway, this time to permanently prevent any shooting on the Range and to eliminate Skyway's easement rights, claiming Skyway had polluted SWFWMD's property with lead shot pellets.

It is important to know that gun clubs routinely clean up the lead.  Reclaimed lead is sold for a considerable amount of money.  The perpetual easement given to Skyway by the Court allows Skyway to continue to use the property (taken by SWFWMD) as a drop zone to deposit shot pellets on the property. 

Skyway wanted to clean up the lead shot pellets.  However, SWFWMD refused to allow Skyway to have access to the property to clean it up and threatened to charge them with trespass if they entered the property. 

SWFWMD subsequently cleaned up the lead shot and sold it, keeping the money for themselves.

In 2004, after a 4 year legal battle, Governor Jeb Bush took action to stop SWFWMD's malicious conduct.  The lawsuit was dismissed with prejudice and SWFWMD was required to sign an agreement to construct a berm to keep shot from falling on the property SWFWMD had "taken" through eminent domain.  The agreement also required Skyway to construct a shot barrier (curtain) “in conjunction with” the berm – but the agreement did not specify any design or location for it and SWFWMD never prescribed any design for it. 

In 2015, in violation of state law, SWFWMD then filed another lawsuit against Skyway seeking to force Skyway to construct a shot barrier.  SWFWMD’s lawsuit also seeks to permanently and completely prevent Skyway's users from any shooting whatsoever alleging that Skyway is refusing to build the shot barrier.

In truth,  SWFWMD has failed  to construct the earthen berm properly. The berm is too short and is already starting to degrade with sinkholes and tunneling from rain water absorption and runoff.  Currently it is overgrown with thistle and brush and is inaccessible by vehicle or by foot. It is unsafe as evidenced by the erosion of the materials used to construct it and the extreme steepness of the design.

Skyway would be foolish to erect a shot barrier on an incompetent, unmaintainable, eroding, unsafe, insufficient "berm" that is steadily degrading day by day.   The problem has been created entirely by SWFWMD.

SWFWMD now owns the land on which the berm sits and SWFWMD owns the berm itself. The lawsuit seeking to compel Skyway to now build a shot barrier on top of this unsafe berm is outrageous and malicious.  One SWFWMD worker has already been killed on the berm and Skyway cannot be expected to commission work under unsafe conditions much less be subjected to liability for knowingly putting lives in danger.

The berm is totally incompetent for any purpose – but even if it were stable, a "shot barrier" would not do the job of keeping shot contained, thus giving SWFWMD an excuse to harass Skyway further. 

It is time to ABOLISH SWFWMD.  This agency is attempting to create it's own little microcosm by taking property from it's neighbors and bullying those who stand in it's way.

Please IMMEDIATELY send an email to Governor Rick Scott and tell him, Abolish SWFWMD now, or stop them from ever again harming the Skyway Trap & Skeet Club.

In the subject line put:  PLEASE ABOLISH SWFWMD

(Block and Copy his email addresses into the "Send To" box)

rick.scott@eog.myflorida.com

PLEASE DO IT TODAY.  Tell Governor what you think about this conduct

IN THIS ARTICLE
Florida shooting range
TRENDING NOW
Obama Says Goodbye to America’s Gun Owners with (a Likely Short-lived) Lead Ammo Ban

News  

Friday, January 20, 2017

Obama Says Goodbye to America’s Gun Owners with (a Likely Short-lived) Lead Ammo Ban

Gun owners knew that Barack Obama would not leave quietly. The only question was what else was coming.  

New Hampshire: Constitutional/Permitless Carry Bill Passes Senate!

Thursday, January 19, 2017

New Hampshire: Constitutional/Permitless Carry Bill Passes Senate!

Today, Senate Bill 12, legislation eliminating the requirement to obtain a permit in order to lawfully carry, passed the Senate without amendment, by a 13-10 vote.  SB 12 will now go to the House of ...

Federal Appeals Court: Chicago Violates Second Amendment … Again

News  

Friday, January 20, 2017

Federal Appeals Court: Chicago Violates Second Amendment … Again

On Wednesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit found that Chicago had once again violated the Second Amendment, this time with its regulations for gun ranges.

Gun Owners Welcome Donald J. Trump as President of the United States

News  

Friday, January 20, 2017

Gun Owners Welcome Donald J. Trump as President of the United States

Gun owners across the nation breathed a sigh of relief as Donald J. Trump was sworn in Friday morning as the 45th president of the United States.

Your Members of Congress Need to Hear from You on the Hearing Protection Act of 2017

News  

Friday, January 13, 2017

Your Members of Congress Need to Hear from You on the Hearing Protection Act of 2017

On Monday, Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID) – joined by co-sponsors Sens. Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Rand Paul (R-KY) – introduced S. 59, the Hearing Protection Act of 2017 (HPA). Similar legislation was introduced in the ...

Alert: WA State Proposes Draconian Gun Ban Bills

News  

Friday, January 13, 2017

Alert: WA State Proposes Draconian Gun Ban Bills

Inspired, perhaps, by Oscar Wilde (“Moderation is a fatal thing. Nothing succeeds like excess”), Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson has announced two new sweeping gun control bills, with Sen. David Frockt (D-Seattle) and Rep. ...

New York Times Relies on Gun Prohibitionist Propaganda, Stigmatizes Suicide

News  

Friday, January 20, 2017

New York Times Relies on Gun Prohibitionist Propaganda, Stigmatizes Suicide

In a December 5, 2015, front page editorial, the New York Times finally admitted what discerning readers had long understood – that the paper advocates the prohibition and confiscation of certain types of now-lawfully possessed firearms. ...

National Concealed Carry Reciprocity Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them

News  

Friday, January 13, 2017

National Concealed Carry Reciprocity Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them

On January 3rd, Congressman Richard Hudson (R-N.C.8th) introduced H.R. 38, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, which simply allows lawful firearm carriers from any state to carry a concealed firearm in any other state. The bill ...

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Florida Urgent Alert! Self-defense Bill up in Senate Judiciary on Tuesday 1/24/2017

A critical self-defense bill will be heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday, January 24, 2017, between 2:00-4:00pm.  SB-128 Burden of Proof by Senator Rob Bradley restores the presumption of innocence in self-defense cases ...

Web Scraping: A Means to Push the Anti-Gun Agenda

News  

Friday, January 20, 2017

Web Scraping: A Means to Push the Anti-Gun Agenda

You may have read recently about a “breaking analysis” that includes numbers derived from a “mass shooting tracker,” which purports to present to the world, real world cases in which mass shootings have occurred.  One ...

MORE TRENDING +
LESS TRENDING -
NRA ILA

Established in 1975, the Institute for Legislative Action (ILA) is the "lobbying" arm of the National Rifle Association of America. ILA is responsible for preserving the right of all law-abiding individuals in the legislative, political, and legal arenas, to purchase, possess and use firearms for legitimate purposes as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.