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September 2, 2003 Tape #017

The White County Drainage Board convened at 10:30 A. M. EST in the Commissioners’ Room of the White County Building, Monticello, Indiana with Board Members Ronald A. Schmierer, John C. Heimlich and O. D. “Bud” Ferguson, Attorney George W. Loy, Surveyor Dennis W. Sterrett and Secretary Romana Kiser in attendance.

Also attending were David Jordan, B. J. Mursener, Charles Mellon, Trent Pherson and Jack Pherson.

Surveyor Sterrett reported that Engineer Frauhiger was unable to attend due to an emergency meeting with INDOT on flooding in the Indianapolis area. Engineer Frauhiger told Surveyor Sterrett that Engineer Paul Couts was not done with his analysis on the C. Brechbiel Tile Drainage problems so he is not present today.

Trent Pherson stated that Engineer Frauhiger called him to say that he would not be here today.

Surveyor Sterrett presented drainage plans for expansion for Cives Steel. He stated that he and Engineer Frauhiger looked at the site two weeks ago. He said that Engineer Frauhiger stated that he redid the calculations to make sure that the pond wouldn’t overflow and he said it is alright, so it is ready for approval.

Board Member Ferguson made a motion to approve the drainage plan for expansion for Cives Steel. Board Member Heimlich seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

Chairman Schmierer stated, “We are ready to approve and sign the Carter-Hines Drain Reconstruction Assessment Roll and documents.” The Board looked over an information sheet on the project provided by the Surveyor’s office (see attached to minutes in hard copy file) and signed the Certificate of Assessments for White County and Cass County Auditors and the Encumbrance of Funds document for the White County Auditor.

Chairman Schmierer said he saw that the Carter-Hines Drain has been sprayed and also the Opal Carmichael. Surveyor Sterrett stated that Tom Funk complained this morning about a ditch that did not get sprayed north of Willie Mote’s. Chairman Schmierer asked if it was to be sprayed. Surveyor Sterrett said yes, six miles of it. He said he doesn’t know if they didn’t get down through there because of the corn or what. Chairman Schmierer said he should get a hold of Shideler Spray Service.

Surveyor Sterrett reported that Clyde Patty has requested having the Hook Drain cleaned on the Hook (Pauline) property. Chairman Schmierer said he thought they cleaned it. Surveyor Sterrett stated they did in 1999. Surveyor Sterrett said Reiff's have cattle on the Hook property. He said that Clyde Patty says that is where it needs cleaned again, that it has 25 inches of water in his pipe under the road. Surveyor Sterrett has not been up there to look at it yet. Surveyor Sterrett said that according to old minutes Mr. Patty had cleaned his part of the drain and he may have his part too deep the way the minutes of previous meetings read. Chairman Schmierer thought we had told a lady to keep cattle out of the ditch. Secretary Kiser stated she thinks that was the Fry Ditch incident but there are cattle in this ditch also.

Charles Mellon stated that it has been in the newspaper that a Wamsley kid has been hired to keep up the neighboring grounds that go into the Tippecanoe River, and one of the main things in it was keeping cattle out of the tributaries that come in to the Tippecanoe River. He asked if there is a State law to that, that has never been enforced? It sounds like he is going to be enforcing it. Chairman Schmierer and Board Member Heimlich thought it was a State law. Chairman Heimlich asked if that was part of the project that the Nature Conservancy is doing with the Tippecanoe River. Charles Mellon said he thinks so. He said he thinks there is a guy by the name of Wyatt that is the head of that.

Chairman Schmierer stated that he would go to the Hook Ditch on Thursday with Surveyor Sterrett to look the situation over. He said also, while they are up there, he got a call from some trailer area up there where there’s a bunch of trees on the ditch. Somebody told him there are trailers on ditch property, too. He thinks Surveyor Sterrett already told him about it and they already took one tree down and after the last storm there is another one or two down. Surveyor Sterrett stated that they took two or three trees down there. Chairman Schmierer said they can take a look at that at the same time.

B J Mursener addressed the Board, “On the drain tile (Jordan Tile) that is running from behind Landis Plastics to the James Carter Ditch, Dave (Jordan), myself and Lloyd Duncan paid for that and our intent is ultimately to get a proportionate amount of money back from them for the square footage or acreage they attach. Wondering, I think we paid 22 or 23 grand in engineering, if we can get a couple of copies of the thing that shows how many acres and what area is included even though anyone attaching would need your approval first, at least we can figure out proportionately what their fair share would be.” Chairman Schmierer said, “The watershed for that? I don’t know why we couldn’t get the watershed for that. That’s already been done. Sure, I see no reason why you shouldn’t be able to have that.” Surveyor Sterrett will get that for him.

B. J. Mursener continued, “I don’t know if there is stuff in your minutes, but is there something that possibly we should record that does show that there is three individuals that own that just so no one goes and argues and whatever? It would be nice to go ahead and record it and make it public record.”

Attorney Loy asked, “You own the tile itself?” B.J. Mursener answered, “Sure, we paid for it, put it in, the engineering and all that.” Attorney Loy stated, “I suppose you could draw up some sort of agreement between the three people, just confirming what your understanding between the three of you….” B. J. Mursener said, “That isn’t the issue, the issue is ten or fifteen years down the line you know and everybody changed around here and somebody comes and wants to hook on….” Board Member Heimlich said it should be in our minutes. Attorney Loy said, “In other words you are looking for something that confirms that it is not ours, it is yours.” B. J. Mursener said, “That’s exactly right, at your request we went ahead and did that.” Secretary Kiser stated that she would find the minutes for him. She said she doesn’t think that in the minutes it names the three of them; it names a company name they were going by at that time. Mr. Mursener did not recall that name.

B. J. Mursener continued, “For your information, on completion of the detainage areas at the West Side Commercial Subdivision, barring it being under water, Jimmy Overbeck is supposed to move his equipment there late this week and weather permitting, will start immediately and we’ll make that 100 percent.” Dave Jordan stated, “We went in and actually dug it a little bit deeper because the bottom never dries out. And with that, it has done a tremendous job in helping it dry up.”

B. J. Mursener said, “A frustration and concern, we did receive a bill for $1,085.00 and I guess that was for the surveyor and the attorney and I assume Todd (Engineer Frauhiger) to inspect it to see what needed to be done yet. I’m the first to admit that we’ve been remiss at getting it completed, a couple of years. I guess in defense we probably spent $50,000.00 more getting under the railroad tracks than we had anticipated when we started out going with a tile that was going to be shared by everybody as opposed to…inaudible…. a private tile in that area, that certainly made money a little short. That contributed to us being slow, but I guess the question about the bill for $1,085.00, I thought a phone call may have resolved that, I mean we weren’t having any secrets or what needed to be done or where we were.” Dave Jordan said, “We are pretty accessible.” Chairman Schmierer said, “The whole charge though, I think that was Todd’s (Samuel L. Moore & Associates) bill.” Surveyor Sterrett said yes. Chairman Schmierer said Todd went out. Surveyor Sterrett said yes, we went out (to the site). B. J. Mursener questioned why Todd wouldn’t have called. Attorney Loy stated that none of that was attorney’s fees. B. J. Mursener said the letter said CTE Engineers along with the surveyor and George Loy. Attorney Loy said, “Yes, Todd and I met to talk about it.” Secretary Kiser stated, “I think it was when Dr. Gutierrez wanted to build and he couldn’t because your drainage wasn’t finished. Then we had to have consultations and site visits and everything to see what needed to be done to finish it up. We had like three different billings that added up to $1,085.00.” B. J. Mursener said, “We would’ve been happy to meet him there, I just think he is penalizing us.” Chairman Schmierer said he thought everything they got billed for was visits Todd made out there. Surveyor Sterrett stated he thought Todd tried to call him the day they went out there and he was overseas. Chairman Schmierer stated that there was nothing charged to them by the County Drainage Board. Dave Jordan reviewed chain of events on the apartment complex taking temporary drains out and McGill’s suing people, etc., and how it became a private tile instead of a County Tile. (See Tape). He requested that the County “eat” that bill. Chairman Schmierer repeated that it all came from Todd (Engineer Frauhiger). Secretary Kiser asked, “You didn’t know that your drainage wasn’t finished?” B. J. Mursener answered, “Sure we knew that”. Secretary Kiser said, “That’s the bottom line, that’s why we had to go see what you hadn’t done because Area Plan wouldn’t give Dr. Gutierrez occupancy. He still can’t get into his building until your drainage is finished.” B. J. Mursener answered, “I understand that. But three trips a thousand dollars?” Chairman Schmierer said, “Todd will be up here within the next week I’m sure and when he gets up here we’ll…..” B. J. Mursener said that would be good. Secretary Kiser stated, “There was one claim for $310.00, one claim for $77.50 and one claim for $697.50.” B. J. asked if there are copies of those. Secretary Kiser said she will get them for him.

Surveyor Sterrett reported that he and Randy DeVault dug up several places (showed where the air wells were on a map) on the Ida Lahr Drain, starting south of 650 South, at the request of Gordon Denton. He said that the water was flowing good and had good volume. He said it was on a steep grade at the outlet and was running; the grade is so steep it doesn’t look like there is much water coming out of it but if it wasn’t working down there it would be backed up here. There is so much water coming in there that the tile is full and it won’t take it all. The tile had about 2 to 3 inches of silt in the bottom of it. Over the years it has built up, it is kind of flat where the silt is. Randy didn’t think the silt was hurting anything in an 18 inch tile. Surveyor Sterrett said he got elevations and it has pretty good grade, it was running good. Chairman Schmierer said DeVault’s idea is that it is working good. Surveyor Sterrett said that is right.

Chairman Schmierer asked if the standing water north of Gordon Denton’s house and north of Dick Thompson’s goes the other way. Surveyor Sterrett said that is right. Board Member Ferguson said it goes to Big Creek north of Mears’. Chairman Schmierer said we probably ought to check that too. He had never seen that road under water there before.

Surveyor Sterrett reported, “A couple of people have been in that live on the south lake (Freeman), Striebacks that had their house about wash into the lake on the high bank down there at Guingrich Addition. They’ve had the Civil Defense out there and I think they called Bud didn’t they. Well, there’s been three people in now and I don’t think there is anything we can do, is there?” Board Member Ferguson asked the names. Surveyor Sterrett said that Strieback was one and Jerry All was another. Attorney Loy asked what they are wanting. Surveyor Sterrett said, “They say the water is coming in a vein 20 feet below the bank. They seem to think it is coming from the south side of the road. We don’t have any legal drains in there. I guess these people have been everywhere, FEMA and………” Chairman Schmierer said we have no jurisdiction over anything like that. Surveyor Sterrett said he told them that.

Surveyor Sterrett reported that Charlie Geier thinks there is a restriction in the James Carter Ditch east of Sixth Street. He says there is a field crossing there with a 36 inch tile into it. Surveyor Sterrett asked if it was alright for Engineer Frauhiger to go look at it with him. Chairman Schmierer said that would be alright. Surveyor Sterrett said this is the end of Carter Ditch east of Sixth Street. He said he thinks it goes between Landis and the fertilizer place. Charlie Geier says it is not used anymore and he wants it removed because it is restricting the flow. His ground is way back to the west. Chairman Schmierer asked if the Carter Ditch was flooding out that way. Surveyor Sterrett said that is what Charlie Geier said. Trent Pherson said Charlie Shepard told them that it came out of the banks. Surveyor Sterrett said Mr. Geier said he lost some crops because his tile outlets were under water so I told him I’d go look at it.

Surveyor Sterrett asked Attorney Loy if he had a chance to look at the private drainage obstruction document. Attorney Loy stated he was going to give him another revised copy.

Board Member Ferguson made a motion to approve the minutes of the last meeting. Board Member Heimlich seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

Trent Pherson asked Surveyor Sterrett about the status on the Woltz Tile work. He said the water is back over CR 800 East again, approximately a foot deep and on CR 725 that hole has gotten severely larger on the east side. Chairman Schmierer asked if that is the one we have open. The answer is yes. Trent Pherson said, “I didn’t know if when it does get down half way if you guys were just going to close it back up or what were you going to do?” Chairman Schmierer asked if they have fixed the tile. Surveyor Sterrett said, “They put in 80 to 100 foot of tile, put in an air well, I don’t know if that air well is permanent on the west side.” Trent said he assumed they left it open so they could check. Surveyor Sterrett said they (County Highway) left it open back in the back and as far as he knows they got pulled off because they’re working on the Springboro Road. Trent said he assumes when the water gets down they’ll get it buttoned back up. Surveyor Sterrett stated, “I looked at it last Friday and I didn’t think it was flowing very good, but I went to where they have it open and the tile was running clear full. The tile is flat from that air well to the last place they dug up. I checked it.” Trent said, “Ok, that kills it there.”

Chairman Schmierer adjourned the meeting.