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December 30, 2004 Tape #027

The White County Drainage Board convened at 10:00 A.M., EST in the Commissioners’ Room of the White County Building, Monticello, Indiana with Board Members Ronald Schmierer, John Heimlich and O. D. Ferguson, Attorney George W. Loy, Surveyor Dennis W. Sterrett and Secretary Romana Kiser in attendance.

Also attending were Kimberly Snyder of Grade A Excavating, Ned Fulkerson, Charlie Mellon, and several others who did not sign the register.

This extra meeting was scheduled to open sealed bids on the Reconstruction of the J. P. Carr and Branch #1 Drain project in Big Creek and Prairie Townships, White County, Indiana. Attorney Loy stated, “We have advertised for bids as required by law, time has expired for submission of bids. It appears that we have three. One from Grade A Excavating of Logansport, Derflinger and Son Excavating of Medaryville and County Line Tiling/Excavating of Winamac. Are there any other persons here that thought they submitted a bid whose name wasn’t mentioned? (none) The first bid of Grade A Excavating, I’ll be reading the basic amount and reviewing them to see if they are sufficient, the bid for Grade A Excavating appears to be $85,000.00 even. Eighty-Five Thousand. Next bid of Derflinger & Son appears to be $74,000.00 even. Seventy-Four Thousand. Last bid is County Line Tiling/Excavating and their bid appears to be $84,573.00. Eighty-Four Thousand Five Hundred and Seventy-Three.”

Chairman Schmierer asked, “You are going to take them under advisement and approve them the next meeting?” Attorney Loy answered yes. Board Member Heimlich said that would be next Tuesday, January 4, 2005. Board Member Heimlich asked what the estimate was on the project. Surveyor Sterrett answered, “Ninety Thousand Five Hundred and Fifty Six Dollars ($90,556.00).

Several landowners and interested parties in the Lewis-Thrasher Tile drainage area were present to discuss a drainage problem. Chairman Schmierer stated that he and Surveyor Sterrett had gone out to the site and talked to Ned Fulkerson and Mr. Hendress about it and told them we would have a landowners meeting about it today and try to get some costs and ideas ready on it.

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “I really didn’t have time to do too much on it as far as field work, but I did scale off some map. It is about 3,800 feet from CR 600 W and then it goes east to 100 N.” Chairman Schmierer said, “So you’re just coming around to that catch basin there.” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “Yes, I haven’t had time to take any grade on it or anything.” Chairman Schmierer said, “Denny was talking to me about it, he went out when it was froze up and went back in there. I didn’t go with him. He said it looked to him like the water was coming out of that tile out of the woods and coming back in to there.” Ned Fulkerson said, “I would agree with that. I think the tile isn’t in shape from that point on to let the water back in. I think it is a pressure thing, if the water is high enough it maintains and the rest of the time it……I think it maintains a level and when there gets more in there the pressure will push the tile up. I think the tile is bad in that area.”

Chairman Schmierer said, “I think we discussed that when we were out there. The tile is bad from CR 100 North there around that woods, on back to that pond, clear on over to CR 600 W. So you were talking about going around the woods. That’s what we talked about, going around the woods, coming around there. Even though you’ve got the right-of-way through the woods. We have the right-of-way, we can force the tile, the Drainage Board can force the tile through the woods. You have the right-of-way, but I don’t think it is going to answer your problem. I think we need to get away from those woods to get to that water to get it out of there. I don’t think we are going to get to the water if we don’t run around those woods from what I’ve seen every time I’ve been out there. I don’t think putting a new tile, reconstructing a new tile through the route that it is now will carry that water. Do you Ned? You guys farm it, you’ve been on it. Mr. Hendress do you think a new tile through that woods will do anything at all? I don’t.”

Conversation in audience with someone explaining to Mr. Hendress is inaudible. (See Tape) Someone said, “I think maintaining it is really the problem through the woods with trees are down and everything else and roots are in the system.” Board Member Heimlich asked, “Is that the problem, roots?” Chairman Schmierer said Jackson owns the woods. Ned Fulkerson said, “I think that tile is broke down from the woods, you looked at that air well at the corner, not clear at the road, I think that section of tile right there is broke down. You guys have worked on it; Albert has worked on it I don’t know how many times, there’s like quick sand. Don’t you think it is probably bad in that area again?”

Chairman Schmierer said, “I think the only way you are going to fix it is to get out of the area and come around it. I think the only way you are going to fix it is with new construction tile. I’m not sure going to the road is the right thing to do. Even though you are going to have to bite the bullet for the expense I’m not too sure you don’t need to get everybody involved….. (two conversations going on…..inaudible. See tape)…Do you think that tile will take that water after you bring it around there?” (two conversations going, inaudible) Someone said now there is no way it can get to the ditch. Someone said if we can get it so it goes into that tile someway, it is going to boil, no question, it’s not going to go straight to the ditch but when the ditch goes down it will let it back in.

Surveyor Sterrett asked if Mr. Hendress owns the ground north of the road, too. The answer is yes. Chairman Schmierer said, “If we boil water up on some neighbor we...” Ned Fulkerson said, “Swygman has a forty on the end. We’re still going to boil some water up on ourselves but we’re still going to gain. Years ago that water got away.” Someone said we farmed it for years. Surveyor Sterrett asked if that pond was tiled. Someone said there are one or two lines going south to the tracks. Inaudible see tape.

Chairman Schmierer asked what kind of costs Surveyor Sterrett came up with for the 3,800 feet. Surveyor Sterrett stated, “Our records show a 14 inch tile. If we put a 15 inch back in it would be approximately $10.00 a foot so that would be $38,000.00 is a guesstimate.” Ned Fulkerson asked, “That’s hooking on at one road and going to the other road, a completely new path.” Surveyor Sterrett said, “Yes and that would be new construction. It would be out of the right-of-way.” Chairman Schmierer said it would be reconstruction but you’re not going to have any trouble because it all belongs to Hendress.

Board Member Heimlich asked, “Where are you talking about going?” Surveyor Sterrett showed him on a map. Chairman Schmierer said, “Go around the woods, John. I don’t think you’re going to gain a thing putting it back through the woods because it is not going to catch that pond is it?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “Well, no, it doesn’t catch the pond NOW. That’s why I asked if the pond was tiled because the County tile doesn’t go through the pond of water.” Chairman Schmierer asked how far that is. Surveyor Sterrett said it is right at the north edge of it.

Someone said, “That is where most of the repair was done in past years, right where the pond is. Roger Demos was in there and got 3 or 4 chunks and tried to put it back down and it was floating out. It wasn’t a real good repair and hasn’t worked ever since.” Surveyor Sterrett said maybe we need to look at it east of the pond. He said he has never done any exploring on it.

Ned Fulkerson said, “I’m convinced like Steve is, a lot of that is from the woods. Remember I showed you the other day, in that corner area there’s been work done but it’s not been done right. I’m not criticizing anybody but it’s hard to do it when the ground is not in condition.” Chairman Schmierer said, “We tried to get something done with that several different times and every time we tried we had objections by the owner of the woods. I think if we just forget it and go around it that is going to be your only answer to get it done properly. You could force that thing back through the woods, because you have the right-of-way, but if you force it back through the woods you are going to come back in five years and be right back in here because you are going to have the tree roots and everything right back in the tile and I don’t think you can maintain it in there.”

Ned Fulkerson said, “The thing that is working for us right now is that there is a small ditch going through those woods and we’re building up enough pressure that the tile is carrying some and the rest is running over the surface. It gets to this area we have the problem with and it can’t get back out of that area. The tile from that point on is, I think it is kind of a pressure situation…….inaudible…..the tile, I don’t know what percent is working, but if there is a lot of water there is enough pressure it will push some, but not near enough to drain it.” Someone said, “Once it gets to the pond and the pond gets so full…..surface over to CR 100 and works its way on around……inaudible…..”

Chairman Schmierer said there are ten to twelve acres of pond there now. Board Member Heimlich asked how many total acres are in that watershed. Surveyor Sterrett said the Lewis-Thrasher Tile maintenance is paid by the Stoller Drain so he had to come up with a watershed and he came up with 258 acres. He said Mr. Hendress has 56% of the land in it.

Ned Fulkerson said, “Maybe we ought to look at from the woods to where I talked about the corner where those trees were, maybe we ought to look at that section. I don’t think the other is feasible at this point, the amount of money it is going to take, and I think that is where your main problem is, from the actual woods east…inaudible…..” Chairman Schmierer said, “You are only going to gain ten or twelve acres for $38,000.00 that’s almost ridiculous to do that project.” Someone said, “Yes, what he’s saying, that area is the problem area then if we could get that so that it is workable.” Someone asked, “Is there any maintenance money that could be used for that?” Chairman Schmierer said he is sure there is plenty of maintenance money in the Stoller Ditch account.

Charlie Mellon stated that years ago there wasn’t any drainage problem out there. He said it might have been in the 50’s they lived there and farmed the Hendress place. He can remember back in there where that pond is that was the best part of the farm and you should be able to get the water off of that.

Ned Fulkerson asked again if there was possible money there to use on that. Board Member Heimlich said that it could be used for tile repair. Surveyor Sterrett asked if there was a strip along where the tile runs that has trees on it after you leave the woods. Someone answered, “Small trees, kind of willows.” Board Member Heimlich said those are worse than the big trees. Surveyor Sterrett showed a map of the pond and pointed out the row of trees over top of the tile. Someone said that the biggest problem seems to be from the woods through that little trench area and after you get past that woods is where it just lays. Chairman Schmierer said it is getting through the woods and going right into the pond. Someone said, “It can’t get from the pond to CR 100, I think you have a bad section has got bad over the years.” Surveyor Sterrett said, “But there’s over THAT tile.” Someone said SMALL trees. Chairman Schmierer said if they are willows they can get in the tile.

Chairman Schmierer asked how long of a section of tile are we talking about there. They figured almost a quarter of a mile. Ned Fulkerson said that wouldn’t be coming clear to CR 100, just to the corner where the trees are that we looked at the other day. He asked what kind of money that would take. Board Member Heimlich said, “Really until you dig it up, you don’t know what you would have to replace. I would think we could go out and do some digging and checking and take it out of maintenance. (Surveyor Sterrett said after we take the brush off the top of it.) It could be that willow roots have plugged it up there in one area.” Chairman Schmierer asked if it will dry up enough that we can get in there to work on it. Someone answered eventually. Someone asked if that should’ve been sprayed by the Stoller ditch maintenance. Chairman Schmierer said we don’t generally spray tiles. Board Member Heimlich stated that normally a tile is out in the middle of a field.

Chairman Schmierer said, “I think you need to get somebody to go out there with you, take a backhoe out there and start digging where you’re at and see what you can find. Dig up 100 feet apart.” Board Member Heimlich said, “See if we can find out where it is really getting obstructed.”

Surveyor Sterrett said, “Two years ago I was out there walking and you could see where he had explored it. He explored it up by where the pond IS it looked to me like and I don’t know what he found.” Chairman Schmierer said, “But you think we get away from the pond and explore up there where the willows are and we might find what we’re looking for.” Surveyor Sterrett said, “The day we were there the catch basin by CR 100 wasn’t half full.” Ned Fulkerson said, “I think that area where we’re talking, it can’t get back in there for some reason.

Chairman Schmierer said he thinks the best thing we can do is get out there and start digging because the cost is prohibitive the other way. Surveyor Sterrett said he can do that. Ned Fulkerson asked, “Are we going to be able to take action on it then?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “You want the brush off of it, we’ll take the brush off of it. That’s the first thing we need to do. I’ll get something ready for that.”

Board Member Ferguson made a motion to approve the minutes from the December 6, 2004 meeting and the December 20, 2004 meeting. Board Member Heimlich seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously.

Chairman Schmierer asked if Attorney Loy had any questions for Mr. Derflinger on his bid. Attorney Loy responded that he did not. Attorney Loy stated, “His bid appears to be acceptable.” Attorney Loy stated that the other two bids were not signed in one section that was required. Chairman Schmierer said he is the low bid anyway isn’t he? Attorney Loy answered yes. He said the bid could be accepted today.

Board Member Ferguson made the motion to approve Derflinger & Son’s bid of $74,000.00 to do the J. P. Carr and Br.#1 Drain reconstruction project. Board Member Heimlich seconded the motion. The motion carried unanimously by a vote of 3 in favor 0 opposed.

Attorney Loy asked if there was a time of completion in the specs. Surveyor Sterrett answered yes. Attorney Loy stated he will prepare a contract.

Chairman Schmierer adjourned the meeting.