In the Feb. 23 issue of Iowa Farmer Today there was a letter about the damage deer do, rightly so, but there is much more the government does to interfere with us making a living from our farms. We became neighbors to the government when they bought land for one of their lakes. Our property joined on most of three sides by Corps of Engineers land — we have about a mile and three-quarters of boundary against them, but they don’t keep up any fence. Ours is a cow-calf farm. I have to have fences. With today’s material cost of fencing at over a thousand dollars a quarter, that is quite an investment.

In their infinite wisdom, the DNR planted the invasive plants honeysuckle and autumn olive and the birds scatter the seed on their way south each fall. I have been fighting a losing battle against these very invasive species for more than 10 years. I shouldn’t have to spend my social security check on spray to try to control these invasive plants the government introduced. DNR people have been here twice and told me they would control the honeysuckle on their property, but I have heard that song before.

If these public lands are for the benefit of all of us, then why do we who live near the public land have to pay so much more than the people who actually use it? I believe a case could be made that it is a violation of the fifth amendment, that they are taking the use of our property without permission or payment.

This has been our home for more than 66 years and I am getting too old to pull, dig, cut or spray these invasive species the government introduced to our area, but if they don’t continue to fight them, they will take over our property.

Rex Peterson

Plano, Iowa

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