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September 20, 2004 Tape #018

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 Charlie Mellon and Margaret Foutch.

Surveyor Sterrett asked how the Board wanted to figure the rates for the J. P. Carr Drain reconstruction project. He asked if the Board wanted him to recommend a rate and present it at a Board meeting. Surveyor Sterrett asked if they wanted to keep it on a percentage the way it is now. Chairman Schmierer stated, “It can’t be flat rated. You have too much ground that is not farm ground. We’ll have to look at it. It is not flat rated now. That’s what you are going to get into. There is so much of it down through there through Juanita Waugh’s that is just pasture. I don’t think you are going to have trouble getting it through because John Brettnacher farms it now and he pays the taxes on the ditches. By the same token, we can’t charge him eight or ten dollars an acre for pasture ground that he don’t even pasture, it’s just rough ground now, rough terrain. He’s going to have to pay some and he knows it. You have some down through Orville Logan’s there that he can’t farm. Do you have it ready to do, Denny?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “Yes, I have the estimate. We got the watershed all printed up.” Chairman Schmierer stated he would come into the Surveyor’s office Thursday and help with setting the rates and then they will discuss and finalize it at the Drainage Board meeting.

Surveyor Sterrett presented a drainage plan for Rose Acre Farms west of Monon for the construction of a manure shed with canvas roof. Surveyor Sterrett stated that he and Engineer Frauhiger went and looked at the site last week and they recommend approval of the drainage plan. Surveyor Sterrett displayed the drawing of the proposed site and improvements. Surveyor Sterrett said, “They said that IDEM is making them put a filter strip around the building to hold the runoff.”

Board Member Ferguson made a motion to approve the drainage plan for Rose Acre Farms for the construction of a manure shed. Board Member Heimlich seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

Surveyor Sterrett added, “They sent a letter for the construction of a new 300 by 100 foot manure storage building and gravel access drive. The area will be approximately three acres including 2.3 acres of new gravel and .7 acre of building. The calculations show that the runoff will actually be less than the undeveloped runoff.”

Surveyor Sterrett reported about a problem on the Hinshaw Burch Tile. He said, “Bruce Vogel lives north of Jack Pherson and that is the Hinshaw Burch Tile that was put in twenty years ago. Bruce complained this year about water in his crawl space. We went out and looked at it and he had water boiling up in his back yard which was pushing sand up. So we went across his woods, which is just to the north of him and found a couple of suck holes over there. So we got Wrede’s out there and they dug it up and there was two inches of water in the tile behind Vogel’s house and there was twelve inches of water in the tile in the woods. We went on down toward the outlet and dug it up and there was two inches of water in it so we figured there was roots in it. We started splitting the distance and found forty foot of solid roots in an eighteen inch tile. We got them cleaned out. We had to cut the top out of the tile to get the roots out then we decided to go ahead and put new tile in. It was eighteen inch plastic solid smooth core. Then I had him take two trees out because where the root ball was, the root ball was forty foot long, and there was a willow right there where it started.” Chairman Schmierer asked if he took the willow out. Surveyor Sterrett answered yes. He said, “Trent Pherson was down there and he called the farm manager for Hinshaw Burch when they put the tile in, which was Don Johnson. Don met me there one day and we looked at the tile that they took out and it had holes in it, and splits down the side of it. It was plastic; twenty years ago it was the newest type of plastic that size. (Charlie Mellon thought varmints had been in it.) Well, that’s what we thought but the tile was split, too. It was supposed to be a solid tile. Actually, we think the roots got in the joints. So, Don had called FRATCO that furnished the tile and I got a hold of him and he came up and got a section of the tile and took it back to the shop, so I don’t know whether we’ll get any help there or not. (Charlie Mellon said it probably wasn’t his tile.) We didn’t know whose tile it was until Trent got a hold of the farm manager and he said that they had FRATCO put it in. It was a private tile and then they turned it over to the County. It was private when they put it in.”

Board Member Ferguson asked if that goes into Pike Creek. Surveyor Sterrett said yes it does. Surveyor Sterrett said that Wrede’s was out there for two days and he doesn’t have the bill for it yet.

Chairman Schmierer asked what all the tile is laying along the Brechbiel Drain at the edge of the field. Surveyor Sterrett answered, “Jack (Pherson) told me today they are going to put a fifteen inch tile in from that low hole down to the outlet. (Chairman Schmierer said ‘they’re going to do it themselves’) Yes, they’re going to run it along the west side of the existing tile that’s in there. I heard they are going to want to put it on maintenance.” Chairman Schmierer said, “They didn’t lose as much (crop) this year as they did last year.” Surveyor Sterrett said, “He said they did. (Chairman Schmierer said it didn’t look like it to him.) He said just because there’s beans there doesn’t mean they’re any good, they’re all shriveled up.”

Surveyor Sterrett had information on the James L. Keever Tile paid by the F. G. Church Drain, which is north of Claude Butt’s house. He stated, “That is where Allen Howe put 500 feet of new tile through Pass’s woods. Claude didn’t think it was working right, so we dug an inspection hole here and the tile wasn’t working. So we got the County Highway out there and jetted it out. We went both ways and we got moving water now. (Chairman Schmierer asked if it was full of sand.) As far as I know we didn’t pull any roots out of it.” Board Member Heimlich said, “But this was a brand new tile?” Surveyor Sterrett said, “No, this was the old part.”

Surveyor Sterrett reported on the Hancock farm out by the Interstate above SR 18. He said, “Several years ago Steve (Brooke, County Highway Supt.) put a culvert under the road (That is the head of the W. F. Myers Ditch) and supposedly lowered it which caused erosion over here. So Mr. Hancock complained about it and Kent Blume, his tenant, complained about it. So, Steve put a guardrail there a couple of weeks ago to hold it. He said go ahead and dip, I figured we could dip out a thousand feet and get some grade. There’s a County Tile coming in here (photo shown) and here it is under water. So, Steve wanted me to get somebody to dip about a thousand feet of the ditch out, leave the spoil, and he was going to carry the spoil with County equipment back over to this side of the road and fill back in where it washed out. This is on County Road 700 West. Steve agreed to pay for dipping the ditch. Do you see a problem with getting someone out there and getting it dipped out and letting it dry?” The Board agreed it would be alright.

Surveyor Sterrett reported, “I called Tom Wagner of Soil and Water Conservation two weeks ago about the Bunnell’s flooding problem over in Carroll County on the Guy Williams Drain and he said he thought he had a plan on it. I called him again this morning and he said he had to go out and look at it again because it had washed out the road to the east of the house. He wanted to get some more drainage area and see what the width was going to be on the rock chute. So he is going to get back with me next week if he can get out there and get something done.”

Surveyor Sterrett reported, “In Monon, down below the bridge you just let, the Monon Township Trustee complained that she thought the water wasn’t moving south of that bridge on Quarry Road during that flood. So I went down and walked the ditch and there is trees that that have fallen over in the ditch, the Fern Mc Killip. You can see trees are lying in here (indicated on map) and it is going to be pretty tough to get to. (landowners on map studied).” Chairman Schmierer said, “I would think they would let you get it out of there.” More discussion on entry route, see tape. Surveyor Sterrett said there are two places they will need to get to, to get them out. The Board was in agreement to get it done.

Surveyor Sterrett said, “Also in Monon, the Watson Tile comes out of the west side of Monon, comes across the railroad, this is Park Road (indicated on map) and dumps into a concrete Catch Basin there and then there is a seven foot tank car underneath the Park Road. It is silted up two feet. So therefore, the Watson Tile is standing clear full of water. I took some elevations. The bottom of the ditch is on rock. I believe 400 feet that way, of course you have to go upstream a ways, there’s a two foot drop off here, so I’d say 600 feet and it is not that big of a ditch. The only problem would be getting the silt out by the tank car. I think something needs to be done. That tile is standing full. We have $1,800.00 in it (ditch maintenance fund).” Surveyor Sterrett thought he could get that done for that amount. Chairman Schmierer said he’d say get it done and get it out of there. The Board was in agreement.

Board Member Heimlich reported on the Monon Ditch Joint Board Meeting he attended on Thursday. Board Member Heimlich stated, “We got a verbal on the permits and the paperwork should be in two weeks. It was done at noon Thursday, negotiations with the Governor’s office. Before on the west side we could remove up to the hundred year flood level. But, (now) they don’t want anything (removed) on the west side for the five miles starting at the White County Line and going up, unless it was dead or leaning. (Discussion about a house built on the bank…see tape) Anyway, it was agreed at noon Thursday that it would be permitted, the paperwork could take a couple of weeks. It looks like it will go to a Hearing.” Charlie Mellon asked where the five mile line starts. Board Member Heimlich said, “Where the Monon Creek, you know where that fork is up there, I think that is the five mile line. The Hearing will probably be at the West Central School. See, going into that meeting there was a petition going around, and I had a copy of the petition before I went to the meeting, to immediately stop all work, stop paying the engineering firm and just do what we were going to do under maintenance. Several signers of the petition were original signers of the reconstruction, but after they heard what went on previous to the meeting then they didn’t present the petition. They just wanted something done but obviously they thought they could get it done under maintenance. There was no way they were going to do anything without the permits, maintenance or otherwise. (Charlie said he heard after the meeting people were patting each other on the back.) There was a room full of people there. The meeting went pretty well.” Surveyor Sterrett asked if they had a Hearing on the cost yet. Board Member Heimlich said, “No, until we had the permits you couldn’t set the Hearing. I suppose it will be late Fall.” He said, “The Governor’s office got involved with the negotiations with the regulatory agencies to get a compromise finally worked out. The one thing that we gave up was the west side of that five miles wouldn’t be touched. We weren’t going to take anything off of the bank there anyway on the west side. We were just going to take up to the 100 year flood. Most of the stuff down that low is probably going to be a leaner anyway.”

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

Chairman Schmierer adjourned the meeting.