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zraver
20 Jul 13,, 04:00
Can we please use some common sense before it is too late? Or is the need for revenue via fines so great that the absurd has become normal?

Elderly Man Fined For Picking Dandelions | LawInfo Blog (http://blog.lawinfo.com/2013/07/15/elderly-man-fined-for-picking-dandelions/)


A 75-year-old Chicago man named John Taris was issued a $75 ticket by a Cook County Forest Preserve Cop when he was caught picking dandelions from an area of the LaBagh Woods. He had apparently volunteered to go pick up the dandelions for him and his wife when their food supply had run low. Mr. Taros and his wife live on a fixed income and according to ABA Journal, Taris said, “the fine for foraging in a Cook County Forest Preserve will eat up half of his bank account.”
Administrative Hearing to Challenge the $75 Foraging Ticket

Taris was hoping to get his ticket thrown out. However, after the administrative hearing, Taris was told that he would not only have to pay the $75 fine, but he would also have to pay an additional $200 in court costs.

According to Karen Vaughan, spokeswoman for the Cook County Forest Preserve District, “foraging is prohibited.” Moreover, Karen Vaughan believes foraging can “have negative impacts on the natural plant and animal communities.”

If you’re ever in Chicago, stay away from the dandelions! 3 pounds of dandelions may cost you $75!

Monash
20 Jul 13,, 04:22
H'mmm I see a potential business opportunity.... as a weed dealer.

bonehead
20 Jul 13,, 04:41
Hell, I'd PAY him to take all the dandelions in my yard.

zraver
20 Jul 13,, 05:00
Seriously, there is a major problem in a society that fined a destitute elderly man for picking a weed to feed himself and his elderly wife.

Gun Grape
20 Jul 13,, 05:22
Seriously, there is a major problem in a society that fined a destitute elderly man for picking a weed to feed himself and his elderly wife.

So where will you draw the line on enforcement?

The law says no picking of plants in a forest preserve. He picked the plants and suffered the consequences.

If you read the blog entry, they waived the court cost.

In Florida he would have received a misdemeanor charge and a $1,000 fine

zraver
20 Jul 13,, 05:42
So where will you draw the line on enforcement?

Basic sustenance is a good place to draw a line.

Gun Grape
20 Jul 13,, 05:55
reading the links on the blog, it wasn't like they were starving. He wanted some Horta to go with the egg and hot dogs.

So he drives to the park and picks 3 pounds worth of the plans. Not just enough for a meal. 3 pounds is a lot of dandelion greens.

And in the original story he doesn't mention not having food.

Horta Picker Taris Faces Court | USA.GreekReporter.com (http://usa.greekreporter.com/2013/07/06/horta-picker-taris-faces-court/)

If he needed food he could have drove to a food bank. Free and legal

zraver
20 Jul 13,, 06:18
Still they were weeds... I mean in Europe it was, "thou shall not eat of the kings deer". In the US it is, thou shall not eat of the kings grass clippings".

Gun Grape
20 Jul 13,, 07:19
Weeds?

From Wiki: The dandelion plant is a beneficial weed, with a wide range of uses, and is even a good companion plant for gardening. Its taproot will bring up nutrients for shallower-rooting plants, and add minerals and nitrogen to soil. It is also known to attract pollinating insects and release ethylene gas which helps fruit to ripen.[28] Taraxacum seeds are an important food source for certain birds.

Seems like just the plant that you want to keep in a forest preserve.

Maybe he needs to grow them in his yard if he likes to eat them so much. They are to bitter tasting for me. Like perilla. The wife eats both

Triple C
20 Jul 13,, 11:21
Probably wanted to make an example of the poor old man. There was a douche bringing huge crowd of tourists to Central Park, NYC on "foraging" tours and park management soon begin complaining of being picked clean. 75 sounds pretty excessive for a destitute couple.

Minskaya
20 Jul 13,, 11:45
It's not all that difficult to comprehend... Cook County Forest Preserve

cyppok
20 Jul 13,, 19:42
It's not all that difficult to comprehend... Cook County Forest Preserve

The problem is that its' excessive and is found all over.
He was picking a weed that regrows in a week.

My feeling is he was picked on because he is weak and won't be able to defend himself. While the guy maybe guilty court costs of 200 bucks if he wasn't are absurd... It seems you have to pay at every junction weather you did something or not if the "officials" fine/tax/rob you by official decree. I don't think he should pay it he has nothing they can't take nothing.

Contesting it costing $200 bucks is the absurd part in my view. If you think about it...

What if he was picking mushrooms or berries? theoretically he didn't kill the plant just took the fruit or in the case of mushrooms fungi.

P.S. if the preserve is public land and belongs to all why can't he pick/forage in there? theoretically it belongs to all the citizens him included and if it belongs to the gov't and not him why does his tax dollars go to pay the person handing out tickets? wouldn't it be cheaper to fire that person and spend more money on replanting it periodically.

zraver
20 Jul 13,, 21:13
In Arkansas I don't think a city or county could pass such a law since the public lands are owned by the state.

tankie
20 Jul 13,, 22:13
The roots make very nice chicory tasting coffee , dry them out in the oven , crush and pour boiling water on , job done , tip , try to get ones dogs aint pissed on ;)

Gun Grape
21 Jul 13,, 00:00
In Arkansas I don't think a city or county could pass such a law since the public lands are owned by the state.

It is unlawful to pick flowers or remove plants from Arkansas State parks. At least Mount Magazine, according to their trail brochure. Its one of the first things mentioned

http://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/stelprdb5211508.pdf

Trails (http://www.mountmagazinestatepark.com/things-to-do/adventure_activities/trails.aspx)
Trail Regulations
To protect the environment and for safety on Arkansas trails it is unlawful to:
•Possess alcoholic beverages on trails
•Carry glass containers on trails
•Litter
•Camp overnight on trails within the state park
•Deface natural or cultural features
•Allow pets off leash
•Ride bikes on trails other than Will Apple's Road Trail and Huckleberry Mountain Horse Trail
•Ride horses or ATVs on trails other than Huckleberry Mountain Horse Trail
•Harass, hunt, or kill wildlife in the state park
•Pick flowers or remove plants

VIOLATORS ARE SUBJECT TO BEING FINED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS

Gun Grape
21 Jul 13,, 00:05
P.S. if the preserve is public land and belongs to all why can't he pick/forage in there? theoretically it belongs to all the citizens him included and if it belongs to the gov't and not him why does his tax dollars go to pay the person handing out tickets? wouldn't it be cheaper to fire that person and spend more money on replanting it periodically.

Because it is a PRESERVE. Things are left alone there so the ALL Citizens of the State can enjoy them. Not so that a few people can use the area as their personal garden

cyppok
21 Jul 13,, 00:08
Because it is a PRESERVE. Things are left alone there so the ALL Citizens of the State can enjoy them. Not so that a few people can use the area as their personal garden

enjoying mushrooms and berries requires eating them...

dave lukins
21 Jul 13,, 00:34
My definition of a weed is: A flower you don't want in your garden ... A picked dandelion will re-grow within days. Do the Forest workers not cut the crass which in turn cuts the dandelion? Are dandelions sacred and held at high value...do people swarm to see ''the fields of golden dandelion?'' Will there be wailing and gnashing of teeth now 3 pounds of this ambrosia has been taken, possibly for ransom or even something else not worth thinking about. Farewell dear Taraxacum I knew thee well.

zraver
21 Jul 13,, 01:47
And in NYC it is better than the homeless starve on a zero fat, zero salt, zero calorie content dose of Bloomberg casserole than get food donations that might lead to a future health problem...

Michael Bloomberg Strikes Again: New York City Bans Food Donations To The Homeless « CBS New York (http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2012/03/19/bloomberg-strikes-again-nyc-bans-food-donations-to-the-homeless/)

Triple C
31 Jul 13,, 09:38
Wait, what?!

The problem with relying on homeless shelters for food distribution is that they are oppressive and dangerous environments. I did MidNightRuns while I was a student in NYC distributing coffee and sandwiches. Most of the homeless folks we talked to said when you have that many desperate men in a confined space, you can get into trouble real fast.

Also, I am sure plenty of college girls in Chicago picked flowers in Preserves to decorate their hair/fancy hats or whatever. Don't see any getting hauled off.

Minskaya
31 Jul 13,, 10:02
There are plenty of green areas in Cook County that are not designated as nature preserves. A simple visit to any cloverleaf would yield bushels of dandelion without any hassle.