'There is no justice in that'; Shoals cabin owners fight to keep their homes

Cabin owners in Shoals were informed they were in violation of Indiana law and told they had to leave their property.

Posted: Jun 25, 2019 6:44 PM

SHOALS, Ind. (WTHI) - Ted Oshier recently retired from years of work at the post office. The Vietnam vet gave a little of that retirement to his daughter and granddaughter. The rest of the money went to pay for his cabin.

Oshier explains, "I wanted to move out of Lafayette and go somewhere where it was, I could fish or a nice little peace and quiet."

Oshier calls the cabin his little piece of heaven. Unfortunately, just months after buying the cabin his little slice of heaven quickly came crashing down thanks to a letter.

Oshier says, "Saying that I was in violation of all these ordinances and everything. And that I had, if I didn't send the appeal letter, I had thirty days to show them that I was tearing this structure down."

Oshier and his neighbors received a letter from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources. The DNR says the cabin owners are in violation of the Flood Control Act. A law that was passed in the 1980s, well before any of the current cabin owners had purchased land.

Cody Roush explains, "I built the cabin up river here. The guy stopped in for the septic inspection from Hoosier Upland, the local conservation officers were there when I was building it and stopped in several times. And nobody ever mentioned anything about any laws, permitting, floodway. Never heard anything about a floodway until two years ago."

The letter says the cabins are in the floodway. It also says if the cabin owners don't comply they could face an initial $1,000 fine. That would be followed by a $500 fine daily.

Roush says, "I feel bad for Ted, it's a bad situation. I mean who wants to kick a veteran out of the house. I mean it's not right. When there are so many other violators in the state."

Oshier explains, "If I tear this down then I would basically be a homeless seventy-year-old man. There's no justice in that."

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