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May 7, 2007 Tape #010

The White County Drainage Board convened at 10:30 A.M. EDT in the Commissioner’ Room of the White County Building, Monticello, Indiana with Board Members Steven Burton, John C. Heimlich and Ronald Schmierer, Attorney George W. Loy, Surveyor Sterrett and Drainage Assistant Mary E. Sterrett.


Also attending the meeting were Charles Mellon, Charles Snow and Don Pauken.


Chairman Schmierer called the meeting to order.


Chairman Schmierer entertained a motion to approve the minutes of the April 5th, 2007, Special Board Meeting. The motion was moved by Board Member Steven Burton and the motion was seconded by Board Member John Heimlich. Motion carried unanimously.


Chairman Schmierer next entertained a motion to approve the minutes of the April 16th, 2007 Drainage Board Meeting. The motion was moved to approve by Board Member Steven Burton and the motion was seconded by Board Member John Heimlich. The motion was carried unanimously.


Next on the agenda, Charles Snow to discuss easement lines of the Leslie Henry

Tile on the Snow Acres Subdivision Lot number one (1). Surveyor Sterrett announced that Charles Snow was present at the meeting and that he had been in to the Surveyor’s Office and had discussed wanting to change the easement on the Leslie Henry Tile that runs through Lot number one (1) of the Snow Subdivision.


Surveyor Sterrett said, “The Leslie Henry Tile is North of Highway Twenty-four (24) just off of Highway Thirty-nine (39) about a quarter (1/4) mile North, that goes through Mr. Phelps’ yard. We have had trouble with that tile, jetting it out and broken down by Mr. Phelps’ garage.” From the subdivision plat showing the location of Mr. Phelps and the Snow Subdivision, also showing the platted easement in the subdivision for the Leslie Henry Tile. Mr. Snow wants to switch the wide part of the easement to the other side of the lot. Surveyor Sterrett said, “Since this is platted I wanted George to be here and I have the minutes of the meeting where they did this.”


Looking at the subdivision plat, Charles Snow said, “See that tile pretty well splits that lot right there in half, what I would like to do is get a variance on this easement from this side over to this side. If they can release this easement over here to a certain point, I will give you what ever you want over here.” Chairman Schmierer asked where is the tile? Surveyor Sterrett explained where the tile was located on the plat. Charles Snow said, (looking at the plat) “Fifteen (15) feet on this side and Forty-five (45) feet on this side here, I will give you what ever you want on this side here. Board Member Burton asked, “Why was it off set?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “Back in 1998 it went through the Board. Jim Milligan addressed the Board asking for a variance on Lot 1 in the Snow Acres Subdivision. The Leslie Henry Branch of the Gladden cuts through the proposed Lot Number One (1), the variance is needed to cut an easement to the tile from a hundred and fifty (150) down to sixty (60). Mr. Milligan submitted his proposal in letter form asking to reduce the right of way to fifteen (15) feet on the West side and forty-five feet on the East side. I don’t know if Charlie wanted that at the time or……..”. Charles Snow replied, “Well, you know at the time six (6) years ago, I didn’t know what I was going to do for sure with it and just like I said, I would rather have the easement on this side, the biggest share of the easement as here (looking at the plat). I will give you some fifteen (15) feet on this side if you will just give me the rest of it. I know you need some on both sides, I understand that but why would you need so much on one side than the other? I don’t understand that either. What I’m wanting to do is possibly get rid of these two (2) lots, right here and this is going to mess it up. If I can get it over here I think everything would be fine.”


Chairman Schmierer asked, “Is that lot going to be big enough to build on without the easement?” Mr. Snow answered, “No, No, I ‘am going to get rid of those lots and make one lot out of it. That way with the easement over here a little closer it would give me a little bit more room. Chairman Schmierer stated, “I really think Attorney Loy should take a look at that, don’t you?” Surveyor Sterrett said, “The plat is recorded like that so in order to ………” Board Member Heimlich asked, “Is it going to be a Consent to Encroach or are we changing the easement?” Surveyor Sterrett replied, “We can hardly change the easement because it is platted like that. Board Member Heimlich replied, “It is more than a simple Consent to Encroach because you are increasing the easement on one side.”

Surveyor Sterrett explaining to Attorney Loy, “Charlie has two (2) lots and the tile runs through one (1) of the lots back when this was recorded…… Attorney Loy asked if it is a regulated tile drain. Surveyor Sterrett answered, “right” and in 1998 they got a Consent to Encroach and this is the way it was, forty-five (45) and fifteen (15).” Attorney Loy asks, “One that we did back then, right?” Surveyor Sterrett continues, “Charlie don’t want it that way now, he wants fifteen (15) on this side and forty-five (45) on that side. Charles Snow said, “Why would it made any difference which side the forty-five (45) is on, I don’t understand that. I will just reverse the easement on you if that is all right with you or give me a variance.” Board Member Heimlich said, “It was done back then as a Consent to Encroach?” Answer from Surveyor Sterrett, “Yes.” Charles Snow replied, I signed everything to them at the time.” Board Member Heimlich said, “Why don’t we just amend the Consent to Encroach and just reverse it?”


More of the same discussion on what Charles Snow wants to do and how to do it………..See tape.


Board Member Heimlich suggests amend the Consent to Encroach and Surveyor Sterrett asked, “What happens to the recorded easement?’ Attorney Loy answered, “I will do new recorded amended easement or amended Consent that would refer back to the other one (Consent of Encroach). Surveyor Sterrett said, “But that has been recorded as a plat.” Attorney Loy said, “That is O.k.” Board Member Heimlich replies, “Like Steve was saying, the drainage easement is still there, that is seventy-five (75) feet on each sides and that still remains. It is just the Consent to Encroach that is allowing ………….Attorney Loy continues, “Right, you will be permitted to build a permanent structure, we will still have our right of way, it is just that you can encroach within that.”


Attorney Loy tells Mr. Snow what documents that he will need to have in order to amend the Consent to Encroach on the Leslie Henry Tile located in the Snow Acres Subdivision.


Chairman Schmierer entertained a motion to amend the Consent to Encroach on the Leslie Henry Tile in the Snow Acres Subdivision, Lot 1 to read fifteen feet (15) on the East side and forty-five (45) feet on the West side (the opposite of the original Consent to Encroach on the platted document) so moved by Board Member Heimlich and seconded by Board Member Burton. Motion carried unanimously.


Next on the agenda providing documents to Hub Tack presented by Surveyor Sterrett. He stated that he had received a letter and a phone call from the President of Hub Tack, Andy Parker. They want to come in and digitized our Section Corners, which means they want to run them through a scanner. They would like a little space in our office to bring in a scanner, plug it in and take all our section corners references, which is quite a few, scan them and then they will digitize them and put them on their web site. They have been in Illinois in fact Mr. Parker gave Surveyor Sterrett an address to get on their web site in Illinois. You look at it, the Township comes up, six miles square and where ever there is a section corner you click on it and up comes the reference. Which Surveyor Sterrett references five percent a year in White County.


There would be a fee, not to us, but they are charging a fee, so should we allow them to do that because we give them out free. Board Member Heimlich stated, “So they are charging a fee to any body that gets on and pulls that up.” Chairman Schmierer said, “We give them out for free?” Surveyor Sterrett answers, “Sure for any one that comes into the office but this would keep foot traffic down.” Board Member Heimlich responds, “We don’t have it on the internet?” Surveyor Sterrett answers, “No, not yet but the State has a GIS site that is doing that and it has been going on for about five (5) years now. There are only three (3) Counties that have their Section Corners on the web site. They (The State) are supposed to bring a scanner around and do the same thing. Well, we are supposed to do it.”


Chairman Schmierer asked, “Your question is whether we want to charge them for this?” Surveyor Sterrett replies, “Whether we are going to allow them to do it I guess,

it is public record. I don’t think they realize how many we have because I looked at the Illinois site and I don’t think they have County Surveyors in Illinois. I think they are just done by private firms. We have corner witnesses for every Section Corner in our Townships and they didn’t have that, so I think it will take them quite a while to do this. I don’t have a problem with that; we could set them up in the back room.


Board Member Burton asked, “How are you progressing with your five (5) percent per year?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “I do those in July so I haven’t done my five (5) percent yet.” Board Member Burton asked, “How much of the overall County have you done?” Surveyor Sterrett replied, “We have done Cass, Lincoln, Jackson, Union and some of Big Creek.” Chairman Schmierer responds, “That is more than has been done in several years.” Surveyor Sterrett continues, “They were done in the eighties so we have those witnesses that were done in the eighties also, we are updating them.”


Board Member Burton states, “It is talking here that we will have a CD containing these records, so if they do all these and they put it on a CD does that do the work that you get to do?” Surveyor answers, “No, that does not do the field work that we would have to do, it does the scanning that we would have to do to provide it to the State, I think. I believe the State requires a PDF and you can convert a TIFF to a PDF and we would have to renumber because their numbering system is different from the States.” Board Member Burton said, ‘So it might not be a benefit to you?” The Surveyor replied, “It definitely would be a benefit because we wouldn’t have to stand there and put the paper into the scanner. All we would have to do so go through and renumber, the State has a renumbering soft ware that lets you renumber that corner.”


Chairman Schmierer asked, “Is this a disadvantage or advantage to you?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “It would be an advantage but does the County want them to sell our information I guess that is the question.” Chairman Schmierer said, “Well if someone wants to buy the information instead of coming and getting it free what do we care.” Surveyor Sterrett said, “We charge twenty-five (25) cents a sheet for the paper, if someone comes in our office and want a witness.” Chairman Schmierer replied, “That if it keeps ten (10) people a year out of our office it might be worth it.” Board Member Burton said, “And if it is somewhat of a benefit to you in this process that you are going to be going through in the future.”

Board Member Heimlich asked, “How long is it going to take them to do this, how long are you going to provide them with a corner of your office?” Surveyor Sterrett replied that he didn’t know. Chairman Schimerer had no reason not to let them do it, Board Member Heimlich said that it was public information and that they probably could do it anyway and that he didn’t have a problem with it. Board Member Burton said he didn’t have a problem with it, if over all the Surveyor and the Public would benefit from it. Within office space reason, if they are willing to work with room that you have available.


Chairman Schmierer wanted to know if there would be any legal question on it. Surveyor Sterrett explains again to Attorney Loy what HUB TACK is wanting to do with

White County’s Monument Records………….…Same as information above, see tape…….....


Attorney Loy responds, “I don’t see any problem with it, in fact they are going to create a data base on CD for you. Are you (The Surveyor) going to want to be able to duplicate that and give it to others or is there going to be a need for that?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “That would be a pretty good deal for them.” Attorney Loy said, “They are probably going to copy right it. I don’t see any problem with that.” Chairman Schmierer said, “There’s your answer!”


Next on the agenda Surveyor Sterrett talks about the Ditch Spraying for 2007. Surveyor Sterrett said, I have the spray list and it is not very vast this summer, it is the same list that we used in 2004. We have two drains that are in debt that some one wanted sprayed. The Amelia Suits which is the Renwick Branch out on nine hundred (900) where Milt Cole did a friendly clean out. That is in debt $5258.00 it brings in $3753.00 a year. Chaiman Schmierer asked, if there had been a draw on it this year. Answer, No! Then he asked what is it going to cost to spray it. Surveyor Sterrett answered, I don’t think we sprayed that in 2004, it is probably a mile and three quarters long, probably around $1,200.00, just a guess. Chairman Schmierer said, it is still going to be $3,700.00 in debt. The question was asked when was it cleaned and the answer was 2005. Surveyor Sterrett said that the Renwick is paid by the A. Suits Maintenance Fund and the A. Suits system has a tile drain up at the North end and there are three tile holes that need repaired now. Surveyor Sterrett was going to have JVS repair them but Jim Simmons is in the hospital so the Surveyor will get someone else but that could be another $1,000.00.


Chairman Schmierer said, probably we need to have a hearing and raise the maintenance. Surveyor Sterrett said, we have already raised it. We have about three tile holes on the North end of the A. Suits every year that need to be fixed. The Board said they thought the Renwick still should be sprayed even if it is in debt.


The C. M. Mertz #2 over on John Coble, the one that we spent $3,500.00 on last year getting the willows off of, now there is water running every where on top the ground, it has another plug in it somewhere. There is a work order on it but it is not at the willows this time, we got that straightened out. There is about fifteen hundred feet of willows that need to be sprayed every year. Chairman Schmierer said, if you don’t spray the willows you will just have to have them taken out again so we better get them sprayed. Surveyor Sterrett said, that drain is in debt $8,000.00 and we also just raised the maintenance on the C. M. Mertz #2; it collects $2,879.00 a year. Chairman Schmierer said, again if we don’t spray them we will have worse problems. Surveyor Sterrett said, he thought it would not be too much to spray the willows, maybe under $800.00, just a guess.


Chairman Schmierer asked the Surveyor if he was going to spray the Esther Fraser this year. Surveyor Sterrett said, “No” because we are going to clean it and we will be working on that this summer. Board Member Burton wanted to know if when they clean the Esther Fraser if all the brush would be taken off. Surveyor Sterrett said that there is not much brush on it and Chairmen Schmierer added, but there is a lot of Scouring Rush (Snake Grass). The Surveyor said that Scouring Brush takes a special spray to kill it.


Surveyor Sterrett asked the Board if they had anyone tell them that they needed a ditch sprayed or if they had any complaints. The Surveyor told the Board that approximately eight people had contacted him to have their ditches sprayed this year so they were put on the rotation list to be sprayed. Charles Mellon asked, “Are any of them north of Buffalo?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “Yes, there is one on the Helfrick, do you want that sprayed?” Mr. Mellon stated, “There are two Helfricks up there.” Surveyor Sterrett said, “The W. W. Helfrick.” Mr. Mellon said, “The one that come out of Pulaski County, the East one or the West one?” Surveyor Sterrett replied the East one.” Mr. Mellon said, “The East one, that don’t need sprayed.”


The Surveyor and Charles Mellon continued to talk about spraying on Mr. Mellon’s property. Mr. Mellon thought that the first quarter mile of the Coonrod drain on Jack Duvall should be sprayed; the Surveyor already has it on the rotation list.


Chairman Schmierer wants to know if the Surveyor had gotten the plug on Mr. Hendress, North of Seafield. Surveyor Sterrett answered, the plug is between two (2) air wells so the plug should be easy to find. We sent a work order to Jeff Woods to repair that and it is also being sprayed. The Surveyor thought that it might be difficult for the spray crew to get to the area. Board Member Burton said, “I think that Fulkersons will be agreeable enough, they know it needs to be sprayed that they will allow access.”


Surveyor Sterrett presented a letter from DNR for a certificate of approval for construction in a floodway. Referring to the drainage map, showing the Lane Ditch, West of the Airport, showing where the County regulated drain ends. Surveyor Sterrett said, “Keesling wants to put a tank car in or a flat bed car now,” showing the area on the map. Chairman Schimere said, “He had a tank car in there, didn’t he?” Surveyor Sterrett said, “Yes, but it is gone, it evidently was not big enough.” Chairman Schmierer asked, “Are they going to let him put a bridge across there?” Surveyor Sterrett answered, “Yes, a flat rail car, do you see any problem?” Chairman Schmierer replied, “No, I thought it was a done deal because I saw the car in there.” Surveyor Sterrett just wanted the Board to be aware of certificate of approval for construction in a floodway.


Surveyor Sterrett reported that Brettnacher had dug up the J. P. Carr Branch #1 Tile on the East side of the tracks. There was a lot of surface water there and let it into the tile, it appeared the tile was working under the tracks. Mr. Brettnacher and the Surveyor walked up the State Highway, North to where the State put in a catch basin on the County tile and there was a suck hole around the catch basin. The Surveyor called INDOT, they are going to run a jet through it, then dig it up and fix the tile. Their jet is broke so when it has been repaired they will do this. The Surveyor thought that it appeared to broken down on the State Highway. The water is backed up at the State Highway where the air well was it had a suck hole and the surface water was coming off of that swale going into that suck hole and the tile was taking it. To the Surveyor it appears the tile is working, then it goes down under the Rail Road. Then on the other side of the Rail Road is where John Brettnacher had dug it up. Chairman Schmierer asked, “Was it broke in there?” Answer from the Surveyor, “No, it was running there, it had a two (2) inch gap of air in the top of the tile and the tile was probably half full of sand but it was taking water. The tile coming under the tracks was bringing water to it.” Surveyor Sterrett said that he was going to have the tile jetted, he had called De Sabatine from Winamac and they should be here sometime this week.


Chairman Schmierer asked if anything had been done at the Reynolds yet, that Charlie VanVoorst was asking about that problem again. The Surveyor answered “no”, that we are going to use the County’s vac and he needs to get a hold of Steve Brooke again.


Board Member Burton asked, “On Jaunita’s (Waugh) ground is that all on the East side of Highway Forty -Three (43)?” (Referring to J. P. Carr Branch #1) Chairman Schmierer said, “East side of Forty-three is where they have dug it up but it is the West side that can’t get drained, they never have drained that.” Board Member Burton asked, “That crosses under Forty-three (43)?” Surveyor Sterrett said, “Right, there is a viaduct there at the Rail Road and it goes under there. That is the Branch that we cleaned the open ditch the water is falling out of the tile before it was under water a foot. I guess when the surface water gets off we can go in and dig on the West side of the Highway.


Surveyor Sterrett reported the McKillip Ditch on 400 North and 500 West where the County put two flappers on the County Tiles, those tiles are standing about half full of water. Surveyor Sterrett checked the grade and he is having Gutwein dip it out between the two roads, approximately eight hundred (800) feet. Gutwein said that he could dip that for about seven hundred (700) dollars. That should get those tiles out of the water, he went on down five hundred feet to check grade, there was no grade. The Surveyor said that he had two complaints Nesius and Ron Byroad. Mr. Byroad said that it would be fine.


Surveyor Sterrett also reported that he had the M. J. Johnson cleaned for seven hundred (700) feet for Scott Wuethrich because the tile was under water and now the water is falling out of that tile. We have not gotten a bill for that as of now but he believes it will be under seven hundred (700) dollars.


Surveyor Sterrett reported that he had gotten a letter on the James Carter Ditch on Main Street from Tim & Carmin Eisele. Chairman Schmierer said, “They live on the East side? I just saw him yesterday and he was telling me about the way that was going in there. I don’t know why we would get this letter.” Surveyor Sterrett said, “I got the file out and plotted up the legal description and when you plot the legal description it starts clear over at Sixth (6th) Street, comes over, goes up North 1204 and plots on the East side of Main Street the end of the drain. I always thought it was Main Street. Todd took me out there last week showing me the structures.”

Chairman Schmierer said, “Why wouldn’t it be their responsibility putting the drain in out there to put the rip rap in to hold the water coming out of the tile. Why would it be our responsibility?” Surveyor Sterrett responded, “I don’t think it is but there is a lot of erosion.” Chairman Schmierer replied, “This guy just approached me about this yesterday and he said he is going to lose his trees and everything else off his bank. I said you need to address that with the Engineering Firm that is putting that drain in out there.


Surveyor Sterrett said, “There is a real steep slope out there, I don’t think the contractor has done anything but I don’t know.” Chairman Schmierer replied, “What do you mean you don’t think they have done anything?” Surveyor Sterrett replied, “To cause more erosion.” Chairman Schmierer continues, “The way that he (Mr. Eisele) talked to me yesterday, the water is coming out of that culver, it is coming right straight against that bank and they haven’t put anything in there to stop that erosion off the bank. That is why I said that he needed to address that with the………..and he said that he had but he didn’t say that he had sent us this letter too.” Surveyor Sterrett replied, “They put concrete blocks along the bank that he is talking about, the West bank.” Chairman Schmierer replied, “They did on the West side but not on the East side where the water is coming in and hitting. I don’t know because I haven’t been down to look at it.” Chairman Schmierer said, “Don Ward said that there are still trees laying in that and they need to be got out on the West side, he just told me that last week. He said there were some tree that fell in West of Ghost Hollow, up behind the subdivision.” Surveyor Sterrett said, “I see, he says that the concrete blocks that they put in are definitely redirecting the water.” Chairmen Schmierer said, “That is what he was telling me and he needs to address that with the Engineering Firm out there.” Surveyor Sterrrett replied, “That is who this letter is addressed to, I guess we just got a copy of it.” Board Member Heimlich said, “I don’t really think it is up to us, we are just cc (carbon copied) on it is directed to the Engineer.”


Other news of interest, the Surveyor has purchased a new GPS and that they will be getting training on it this coming week, also that the County Surveyor’s Explorer had broken down. It was asked the problem and the Surveyor said it wouldn’t start; it would turn over but wouldn’t fire. He had it towed to Bartlett Ford in Brookston and they were to let him know the cost of repairs.


Charles Mellon spoke to the Surveyor about the ditch that they had been talking about earlier. He said that a large chunk of grass had fallen into the ditch and thought that it need some ballast put in. Bob Bowsher had done a repair last spring and he still hasn’t turned in a bill and he has a small truck load of ballast that he could put in if the Surveyor would give him the o.k.. Then Mr. Bowsher could add that ballast to his bill, Charlie will let the Surveyor know if Bob Bowsher can do this.


Chairman Schmierer adjourned the meeting.