(Essay Continues): What is the Public Trust and how does it affect beach access in Fairfield?
Franz: dressed to the nines
4] ORIGINS & HISTORY OF THE PUBLIC TRUST DOCTRINE (PART I) Justinian I: “Justinian the Great.”
The ancient laws of the Byzantine (Roman Empire) Emperor Justinian stipulated that the shorelines that were not appropriated for private use were open to all. Under this legal concept of common property, the tide and submerged lands were unique: it was thus impossible to hold private ownership over the air, rivers, sea and the seashore; they were dedicated to the use of the public, and the state was to hold them “in trust” for the people.
Roman Civil Code in the sixth century A.D. (The Justinian Institutes: the legal texts of the time) affirmed:
“By the law of nature these things are common to
mankind— the air, running water, the sea, and consequently the shore of the sea.” Thus, common property could be owned by no one, affording all citizens access to it.
English “Common Law”:
Navigable Waterways are “held in public trust.” Under English common law, this principle was advanced and developed into the public trust doctrine pursuant to which the sovereign held the navigable waterways and submerged lands: not in a proprietary capacity, but rather “as trustee of a public trust for the benefit of the people” for uses such as commerce, navigation and fishing.It eventually became codified law (authorative and systemically arranged)
in England as well.
Icha: the sentinel
Through the Magna Carta (1215) public rights were further strengthened at the insistence of the nobles (the privileged social classes) that lowhead dams which obstructed free navigation be removed from rivers.
Changes in English common law enacted in 1641, and additional modifications enacted by Colonial Ordinance in 1647, owed to English disfavor for “ownerless property,” and Roman law was expressed by assigning ownership of common property to the king: not for his private use, but as a trustee of these properties for the benefit of the people. The concept of common easements for public navigation and fishing was introduced, with an understanding that the Crown owned submerged lands and shorelines in trust for the people. This reinforced the concept within the public trust doctrine that government (the sovereign) has an affirmative duty to administer, protect, manage and conserve fish and wildlife; and further, government cannot turn that responsibility over to another. This re-affirmed that a state’s title to its waterways and tidelands was different from that to the lands it may hold for sale (commit to private purposes), as it must be managed to protect the “common heritage” of its people (see: Henquinet & Dobson, 2006).
ENDNOTES (this page):  Justinian I or Justinian the Great (Flavius Petrus Sabbatius Iustinianus; Greek: Φλάβιος Πέτρος Σαββάτιος Ιουστινιανός), AD 483 – 13 or 14 November 565, the second member of the “Justinian Dynasty” (after his uncle, Justin I) was Eastern Roman Emperor from 527 until his death. Amongst Eastern Orthodox Christians, Justinian I is considered a saint, and is commemorated by some Lutheran Churches.One of the most important figures of “Late Antiquity” (300 – 600 AD), the influence of his administration extended far beyond the margins of his time and empire. Justinian's reign is marked by the grand (ultimately failed) restoration of the empire (renovatio imperii).This ambition was expressed in the partial recovery of the territories of the western Roman empire, including the city of Rome itself.
A more significant aspect of his legacy was the uniform rewriting of Roman law, (the “Corpus Juris Civilis”) accomplished in three drafts: a codification of imperial constitutions from the 2nd century onward (529- 534); an anthology of older legal texts (533); and a primer explaining the principles of law (534). Finally, a supplement defining a collection of new laws issued during Justinian's reign was added.
The Corpus became the basis of Latin jurisprudence, including ecclesiastical “canon law” (the legal system of the Catholic Church), and represents several sources in which the laws and rules were expressed or published: (proper laws, senatorial consults, imperial decrees, case law, and jurist opinions and interpretations.The code ensured the survival of Roman law: it formed the basis of later Byzantine law, was introduced in Italy (554) from where it was to pass to Western Europe in the 12th century; and become the basis of European law code. The Corpus is still influential to this day.
Pumpkin: charmed greeting...
 The Institutes provided: “Now the things which are, by natural law, common to all are these: the air, running water, the sea, and therefore the seashores. Thus, no one is barred access to the seashore.”
 Common law refers to the system of law originating in England, as distinct from the civil or Roman law and the canon or ecclesiastical law. It is the unwritten law, based on custom or court decision, and so, differentiated from statute law. In this, common law is the law developed by precedent administered through the system of courts established for the purpose, as distinct from equity or admiralty. See also: endnotes here.
 Magna Carta, (Magna Carta Libertatum, or the “Great Charter of Freedoms”), is an English legal charter, written in Latin, originally issued in 1215 (amended in later years, with the 1297 version remaining today on the statute books of England and Wales).Magna Carta required King John of England (1199 – 1216) to proclaim certain rights (related to nobles), respect certain legal procedures, and acknowledge that his will could be compelled by the law.
Magna Carta was the first document forced onto an English King by a group of his subjects in an attempt to protect their privileges- by limiting his powers.It overtly protected certain rights of the King's subjects (whether free or shackled), and implicitly supported what became the writ of habeas corpus (“deliver the body”) and thereby allowing appeal against unlawful imprisonment by requiring government to show “just cause.”Magna Carta is regarded as the most significant early influence on the extensive historical process that led to the rule of constitutional law (the basic laws that form the foundation of a government) today in the English speaking world.It induced the maturing of common law (see above), and the United States Constitution.
Tico: indefatigable cheer...
 An extended and complicating factor is that granted and un-granted lands may already have been developed for certain trust uses that are incompatible with other trust uses, or may have become archaic. An example would be tidelands that were dedicated exclusively to industrial port uses, in which recreational uses (even if also authorized by the trust grant), may be irreconcilable. Piers, wharves and warehouses that once served commercial navigation but which are now incompatible with modern container shipping protocols would suggest conversion to a more
productive trust use.
Likewise, historic public trust uses may have been supplanted by new technologies. Outmoded waterfront structures might be an impediment rather than a crowd-puller for public access and use of the waters. Since public trust uses may conflict with one another, state and local tidelands grantees, as administrators of their respective public trust lands, are charged with choosing among these conflicting uses, with the legislature as the ultimate arbiter of their decision-making (see: "The Role of the Legislature" on page 5, "Attending Issues," of this essay).
This essay is written for informational purposes, not as legal scholarship, researched from publicly available sources and government documents.
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The lure of the sea...
“I can't think of anything that brings me closer to tears than when my old dog—
completely exhausted after a hard day in the field—limps away from her nice spot in front of the fire
and comes over to where I'm sitting and puts her head in my lap, a paw over my knee, closes her eyes,
and goes back to sleep. I don't know what I've done to deserve that kind of friend.” —Gene Hill
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To think about: American taxpayers spend more than $1 billion annually to fund municipal animal shelters.
In those facilities, 14,000 animals are killed each day, often brutally: even in archaic gas chambers...
many within merely hours of their arrival: why are they called shelters?