more on recent ruling
thought this excerpt from the judge's ruling was interesting:
"Boldt noted that an expert witness for the opponents of the boat launch had failed to prove there were "objective characteristics" of a navigable stream within the wetlands.
"Rather, it seems like a fictional construct of a group of nearby private riparian owners who are unhappy to be sharing this area of public waters with a public boat ramp. But the public waters of Wisconsin belong to the residents of the state and are held in trust for all of them, not just lake property owners," Boldt concluded."
....the fictional construct he was referencing was outlined in item 14 of the official ruling
"The next best effort by the petitioners to identify the area as a stream was present in the testimony of Mr. Reinbold. As Reinbold credibly testified, there is no question that that there has been regular flooding in the area and that water has flowed both away from and toward the lake along a line roughly consistent with that drawn by O'Reilly. But that does not make this area a stream.
Significantly, no aerial photographs were presented that identified a navigable water that presented itself objectively over time nor was any evidence presented to establish a definite stream channel. Rather, historic aerial photos from 1941 to 2010 do not support the existence of a specific flowing stream channel in this area.
Further, the day the kayak was paddled and filmed in the grove of trees, July 15, 2010 , followed a particularly wet month of June and the second highest rain events in July of that year. Ms Hanson testified that she had not previously navigated anywhere on the DNR property. Moreover, Ms. Hansen paddled the area on the specific day that she was directed to by O'Reilly.
Overall, the minimal facts presented do not support a conclusion that a navigable water exists in the grove of trees. Rather, the area meets the legal definition of diffuse surface waters in a floodplain.""
[This post was last edited on 5/10/12 at 9:04 AM]