nature on trial:  fighting for freedom of choice in landscaping
Still still waiting
by jcr13Friday, May 26, 2006 [9:20 am]

Our meadow is filling in nicely, with beautiful tussocks of grass here and there, many now over two feet tall.

I planted sunflower seeds in a few places along our street frontages.

To my delight, we have several great mulleins that have sprouted up in the front yard. We had many in the back yard last year, but those did not come back.

The white clover that we planted is taking over in certain spots, forming dense green blankets.

But we are still waiting for a decision from the court. I talked to the Village Administrator today (not about our trial, but about next week's village-wide aerial BT spraying for forest caterpillars). At the end of the call, he brought up "my grass" and said they have been asking the court for a decision. It has now been more than five months since the trial and more than four months since the summations were filed. He said they need a decision soon, because they need to figure out what to do with my yard. If they do not get a decision soon, they will issue another ticket. I told him that would count as double jeopardy, and that you cannot be tried twice for the same crime. He said that would be nice if it was true---then he could only get one speeding ticket in his life. I responded that multiple acts of speeding count as separate crimes, but this is all one continuous act: my grass was taller than 10 inches last year, it still exceeds that limit, and I have never mowed it. They cannot issue me a new ticket for a crime while I am still on trial for that same crime.

Since the Village has been pestering the court for a decision, I decided to drop my "let sleeping dogs lie" philosophy. I called the court clerk to ask what was going on. She said that she has been reminding Tom (the judge) that a decision is overdue. He is taking a long time because he has been doing a lot of research on the matter. She has given him a deadline of next Wednesday (May 31, 2006). She will call me when I can pick up my copy of the decision.

My wife, Lauren, is convinced that they will decide against me at this level despite all of the caselaw, precedents, science, and logic in my favor. I better get ready to appeal.


[Submit Comment]
by Sergej M.Thursday, June 1, 2006 [12:08 pm]

Very interesting development, at least for me. Thank you for keeping this webpage updated.


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Trial Documents:
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--Photograph Map
--Photograph Legend
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External Links:
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--Wild Ones
--National Wildlife Federation
--Rappaport on Weedlaws
--EPA's Source Book for Public Officials
--Air Pollution Released from Cut Grass
--Honey, I'm not mowing this year
--NY Criminal Justice System Handbook
--Civil Appeal to County Court

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