From: Dave Van Dyke
To: Dean Sanpei,
Subject: HB 37
Date: Fri Feb 21 16:45:42 MST 2014

Dear Chairman Sanpei:


As a Land owner I was appalled at the Utah Supreme Court’s ruling in Conaster.  It was beyond belief that the Court would enter a ruling that effectively took private property and gave it to the general public.  The fishermen would have everyone believe that HB 141 took away what they always had.  However, that was not the case.  The Court, in the Conaster Ruling, gave the fisherman something they had not previously had.  HB 141 simply restored to the private land owners what was rightfully theirs and what the Court had taken away.  Now the fisherman desire the Legislature to take private property rights and it give them to the general public.  This is unacceptable.  The fishermen with the assistance of the Utah Stream Access Coalition (USAC) have sent out daily emails reporting untruths and acting in an unprofessional manner in an attempt to gain support.  I believe you were recently provided with a copy of one such email that was received yesterday.  As you are aware the three names on this photo are all heavily involved with the USAC.  If this group is so interested in taking private property why don’t they focus their efforts on raising funds to purchase the property they want to have taken by the Government and then donate to the public.  They need to put their money where their mouths are and “give up their rights to private property.”  I understand they may view the right to access the river as their and as such there is no private property.  However, this has never been the case.  Their conduct is socialism at work.  Taking from those that have worked to obtain what they have and giving to those who have not in the name of equalization.  I have not heard or seen any indication that any of these fishermen have been willing to voluntarily give up their own property for the betterment of Utah’s outdoorsman.  If the Utah Legislature takes our private property what will be next?  Something similar to the requirements of Obama Care?  We recently witnessed the United States Supreme Court find that we all have to purchase insurance and that such mandate is a “tax.”  Those who understand what is happening know that it is not a tax but an erosion of our freedom to choose.  We are being told what to do under the guise of a claim that we have no choice because it is a “tax” and because the government has a right to “tax” us we have no choice.


HB 37 seeks to create a new standard for “public access water.”  The Fishermen themselves tout this as a compromise.  It is only a compromise because they are willing to accept the fact that the Court’s ruling in Conaster was incorrect and they would rather have something rather than nothing.  It is still a taking and that is all the fishermen want, something for nothing, this is not a “compromise.”  HB 37 is not a compromise it is an all out “taking” and if the Legislature is going to move forward with a taking then is should be prepared to compensate each and every landowner for that taking.  The fishermen have always had the right to fish the public waters of the state.  Now they want the right to use the land owned by a private owner for their own benefit because the find it to difficult just to use the water without the land.  A recent letter from William Marsden to LaVar Christensen states how he has fished Utah’s streams for nearly 60 years and points out that when they needed access they asked for permission.  However, now he is frustrated because he does not get the response he desires or he is unable to ask for permission at the instant he desires.  So he touts HB 37 as being a good compromise because it would give him what he desires, what he was willing to ask for in the past, without the need of respecting the private property rights of others and without the potential of litigation for disregarding the private property rights of others.


Utah is a state founded on the protection of the private rights of the people.  Look at our history and why are ancestors came to this state.  It was to get away from  other states running rough shod over their rights.  The protection of our property rights should be of the utmost importance.  HB 37 is simply another step to erode the rights of the people in their private property.


I encourage you to abandon the push to adopt HB 37 and instead support HB 233.


Thank you for your time and consideration.


David A. Van Dyke, General Manager

The Lodge At Red River Ranch

P.O. Box 22

Teasdale, Utah 84773

(435) 425-3322 - Phone

(435) 425-3329 – Fax

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