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February 16, 2010

The White County Drainage Board convened at 10:40 A. M. in the Commissioners’ Room of the White County Building, Monticello, Indiana. Board members present were: President Ronald Schmierer, Vice President Steve Burton, and Drainage Board Member John Heimlich. Also present were Attorney George W. Loy, Surveyor Dennis Sterrett, Drainage Assistant Mary Sterrett and Secretary Jamie Rozzi.

Also in attendance were Engineer Todd Frauhiger, Peter Park and Jeff Nemeth representing Horizon Wind Energy and Sharon Watson representing White County Soil & Water. Landowners in attendance were Tim and Cindy Hall, Bob Wrede, David Girtz, Elmer Girtz, Wayne Hunt, Don MacOwan, Dirk Fleck, Jim Sharp, William Kiste, and Kevin Lachmund.

The first item on the agenda was to approve the minutes from the February 1st, 2010 meeting. Board Member Heimlich so moved. Board Member Burton seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

 

The next item on the agenda is Meadow Lake Wind Farm – Phases III, IV, and V Drainage Agreement.

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Are we ready for them today? Do they have everything together?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Yeah, I got it this morning via email. I called Todd (Frauhiger), our engineer, and we talked it over. We have three permanent crossings, one of them is in the Roudebush Ditch, Witham Ditch, and the Wallace Ditch. The Roudebush Ditch which is along the county road there is going to be a five by ten concrete box, which we agree on. The Witham Ditch is going to be three, 72 inch culverts which is a temporary crossing. The Wallace Ditch…they had recommended two, 60 inch pipes and we didn’t think we’d want to culverts in the ditch because it blocks up trash and this is a permanent crossing. We would recommend a five by ten concrete box.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Have they agreed to that?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Yes.”

 

Board Member Burton questioned, “It would probably cost the same, wouldn’t it?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “It’s probably more, I would say….a concrete box.”

 

Mr. Park stated, “We would be required to maintain that…so for operations…”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “We have a twin crossing…well, we have several of them, but there is one on the Dorsey Ditch where it empties into the Bell Ditch and every year we remove debris from that twin crossing because cornstalks and limbs get caught and it backs up. We found out there were more temporary crossing than we thought, but…they seem to have those adequately sizing according to their engineers. I don’t know what temporary means…6 months maybe…”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Are you ready to approve it?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Yeah, we’ll approve it contingent on getting the plan for the concrete box culvert for the Wallace.”

 

Board Member Burton made a motion to approve the Drainage Agreement for Meadow Lake Wind Farm Phases III, IV, and IV contingent upon getting the plan for the five by ten concrete box culvert for the Wallace Ditch. Board Member Heimlich seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

 

The next item on the agenda is J. T. Williams Landowners’ Meeting.

 

Chairman Schmierer explained, “This is continued…we’ve had one on this and you’ve done some work on it since…why don’t you go ahead and tell us what you have on it, the cost, what we’re in debt and go from there—we’ll discuss it.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett explained, “Right now the drain is in debt approximately $2,400.00. It collects $1,700.00 and after we collect the 2009 collection it will still be in debt $700.00. We have kind of stopped work out there because it’s in debt. We haven’t had any tile breakdowns or maintenance issues since…we discussed at the last meeting of cleaning one mile of the ditch and my estimate for that was $29,500.00. You sent me back out there to get an estimate on how much it would take to get the tile out of water that is on the south end of the ditch and I took some elevations and I got 1,600 feet of brushing and cleaning. My estimate for that was $5,516.00. That would get the tile…right now the water is over the tile by about a foot at the south end of the ditch. So, if we clean north from there 1,700 feet the tile would…”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Do you have a lot of fall after the 1,700 feet?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “I don’t know, I didn’t go any farther with my elevations. It looks like there’s some fall there.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “So, when you say the south end are you talking about down on 600 East?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “500 North…south of 500 North. If we clean from the end of the ditch up to the road which is 1,700 feet…and then down the road, we’d clean up to where the ditch turns and goes north. That was the proposal I came up with.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “So, it would start at 600 East?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “The ditch starts at about a quarter mile south of 500 North; that is the top end of the ditch.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Part of it is tile then?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Yeah, the tile is coming in from the southeast.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “We’ve spent a lot of the money on the tile though, right?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Well, yeah, along State Road 39 there’s tile on it.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “How many landowners are there?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “23…it’s a variable rate. There are 37 total parcels in the watershed. The benefited acres are 752. There are 3 parcels at $1.00 an acre, 1 parcel at $1.80 an acre, 13 parcels at $2.00 an acre, and 14 at $3.00 an acre. The minimum rate is $5.00 and that includes 6 parcels.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “Well, if it brings in $1,700 a year and were going to clean that and you raise the maintenance three times, it won’t get it out of debt. It’s in debt $2,400.00 and we’re going to collect $1,500.00 it will still be in debt $700. You have a $5,500 estimate. If you raised it three times, which would bring in $5,100.00 in three years it would still be in debt…If you didn’t work on anything else, and you know that’s not a possibility with that old tile. We’ve done a lot of work on State Road 39 up there.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Any questions on it?”

 

Mr. Hall stated, “I don’t think it needs to be done.”

 

Mr. MacOwan stated, “I’m not quite clear how far north you are planning on going.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “Just from the south end of the ditch, north to 500 North…right along the road there and down to the end where the ditch turns and goes back north. We were going to start there and work our way south to the end of the ditch. It’s about 1,700 feet.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Is that going across Wrede’s property?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Yeah, Wrede’s is on the south end.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “I’m on the west side of that.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “You stated to me that it might be wetlands, did you ever have a chance to check it out?”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “No, I’m going to rock that boat if the Commissioners are on it. Is this a reconstruction or new construction?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “Well, we’re trying to do it on maintenance.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “So you don’t have to get permits or anything…”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “As long as we take the brush from one side and the ditch is not in a Flood Hazard area and we’re not within a half mile of the lake.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “Right at the head end of that…that area is large enough and wet enough that it could be classified as a wetland. If it’s a wetland then you can’t put the spoil up…”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “Right, you’d have to truck it off.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “But I’m going to leave that up to you, whether you want to address that or…”

 

Surveyor asked, “Where do you think it is?”

 

Mr. Wrede replied, “It might be a wetland…”

 

Board Member Burton asked, “You’re down at the discharge end of it, that’s where you’re talking, am I right?”

 

Chairman Schmierer replied, “No, he’s up there at the head end too.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “I’ve got road…if you ever want to go look at it, it goes all the way back. There’s about an acre or two acres of unfarmed ground that has large trees that are wetland trees. I’m not here to rock the boat; it’s not going to have a positive or negative effect on what I am doing on my side. You’d clean that off the east side of the ditch, wouldn’t you?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Yeah, I wouldn’t do it off the west side.”

 

Board Member Burton stated, “It’s in debt $2,400 and it brings in $1,700 a year. Do you by chance wouldn’t have the average that’s being spent on it per year would you?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Well, we had one big repair…the State Highway put a culver under State Road 39 and I had a contractor out there most of that time. He billed us $4,900 for that.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “Where was that at? Are there tile there that are part of that?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Yes.”

 

Mr. Wrede asked, “Is there a definition where the ditch end on that?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Yes.”

 

Mr. Hunt stated, “It seems like it would be fair to everybody; if we paid on this other tile for the last twenty years that everyone should pay on this other project. Divide it up amongst the acres draining…when we did this tile thing….so we could pay on that for twenty years and now we don’t have any money in the account.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “Normal maintenance hadn’t been high enough either to pay it. We spent so much money on it, the normal maintenance should have been raised some time ago, but it’ll take…you’d have to raise it quite a bit to keep normal maintenance to pay a bill on it. It hasn’t had normal maintenance money spent on it.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “I don’t know what everyone does, but I had a culvert outlet failure into that ditch last year; roots got into it and plugged it up and there’s a pretty substantial drain that goes through my property and goes west over on to the neighbor across 550 East. I called Denny about it repair and he told me the drain didn’t have any funds in it so I went out and put in a new outlet in….and did it on my own because it needed the drainage. I spent a grand on that last year just trying to keep things opened up and going. You know, it’s a doubled edged sword. I didn’t mind and I’m not complaining…and I’ll share on this, whatever you decide is fine with me. I guess the concern I have is if the court drain only goes to 500 North and we’re going to clean on south that’s not part of the ditch then that’s not part of the drainage…or if it only comes 300 feet and we’ve got 800 feet to do.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “No, it’s a regulated drain. The legal description goes clear to 600 East, south of 500 North, even if it’s not open.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “I understand that. So, the open ditch portion…where does that terminate at? How many feet south of 500 North?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Wherever it terminates.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “Ok, so it’s not by definition in the legal description.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “No. The tile is included with the open part. ”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “This is not a hearing. We’d have to have a hearing…”

 

Board Member Burton stated, “One thing I keep referring back to is that even if we took this $5,500 out of the equation this ditch has a tendency on a year-to-year basis to exceed its income. Maybe I’m opening up something that we don’t want to go there, but let’s put aside the $5,500. With everyone sitting here maybe we need to consider raising the rates, at least it’s taking care of itself regarding of whether we did the $5,500 project or not. I’m sorry if I opened a bigger issue, but we got two things here. One is to keep up with it and the second would be this project.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “Well, to put in debt $5,500 when it’s already in debt…first of all it’s supposed to be against the law. Secondly, you’re going to have to raise the rates three times and that’s not going to pay it off in three years, so then you need to go from there. Even if you raise the rates…historically, even if we raise the rates twice what they are it won’t keep up with it.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “I have the maintenance we’ve done on it for the last ten years. I have a list of it here.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “And it won’t keep up with it even if we raise the maintenance twice.”

 

Mr. Hunt stated, “I would like to say something. There has been nothing done to the open ditch in the last twenty years. Nobody money has been spent on the ditch, it’s all been tile.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “The money that has been spent, I assume has been off of the tile? Which one?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “The Criswell and the Fleming and Harrison.”

 

Board Member Burton asked, “Are they under water where they enter the ditch?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “No, I don’t think so. I don’t really know…”

 

Board Member Heimlich stated, “So, nothing we’re going to do here is going to effect those tile at all.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “It will benefit everything south of 500 North, that’s about it.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “What’s the problem with the tile to the north?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “They break down, they are old tile.”

 

Board Member asked, “But it’s not because they are blowing out because they’re under water?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “No.”

 

Mrs. Hall asked, “So is the ditch really the issue or is it that the old tiles are collapsing?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “The issue is that there is no money in the fund to even fix the tile anymore.”

 

Mrs. Hall stated, “Well, I understand, but I guess if the tiles are the problem versus the ditch…I understand the funds need to be in there and we need to raise the maintenance, but if we raise the maintenance to clean the ditch and there are still tiles breaking then have we really achieved anything? Am I thinking right? Correct me if I’m wrong, but…”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “I didn’t catch what you said…”

 

Mrs. Hall stated, “I guess my thought, listening to everyone talk is, if the ditch is truly not the issue and the tiles are the issue because they are old and breaking down…if we raise the rate and spend all this money on the ditch and the tiles are still breaking then you still haven’t achieved anything.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “Well, tiles are not going to heal. I can tell you that. They are going to continue to break down and whatever we do, even if we clean the ditch and raise the rates to pay for the ditch we’re going to have to raise it more to just keep up with the maintenance of the old tiles. Three times isn’t going to be enough…even four times, it would get it out but then you’d have to be two times just to maintain the old tiles. We’d probably have to…I’m just using this for an example, but if you pay $1.00 an acre then you’d pay $4.00 an acre for the next four years for the drain, it would probably stay $2.00 an acre afterward because it’s going to take that much just to maintain to keep the tiles and everything going. Like Wayne (Hunt) said there hasn’t been anything done on the ditch for several years. There hasn’t been any money to do anything with and there hasn’t been anything done to the tiles outside of constant repair. At one time, I think they were talking about replacing that tile and we had a landowner’s meeting on that and no one wanted to replace that tile. I’m not sure….off of State Road 39. ”

 

Mr. MacOwan stated, “Yeah, and that’s a question I got too…on that county tile that goes under the state highway, ok? When they put that new culvert underneath it, shouldn’t the state pay for underneath the road?”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “They paid for the culvert underneath the road, but we have to pay for fixing the tiles. That’s where we got in trouble…when they put all that water in there we had a lot of tiles blow and there were other landowners that had tiles blow.”

 

Mr. Wrede asked, “Is it possible to separate the tiles from the open ditch? So they have their own funds?”

 

Mr. Hunt stated, “Is seems like the logical thing to me…to separate the tile and let them take care of that tile. We’ve spent money for twenty years and put this money in this account and now it’s not here.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “That’s very easy to see and now we’re in the dilemma where we got no money and a lot of work needs done.”

 

Mr. Hunt stated, “Raise the taxes…do per acre…and one lump sum and take care of it.”

 

Mrs. Hall stated, “If that’s the case, as far as doing that, then personally I would rather see the tiles repaired. Up to this point all that money has been spent on tiles and there are still tiles breaking. I guess if I had a choice of…because of what we figured up, everyone in this room knows that the majority of the acreage going into it is between us and Ralph and Joanne…and we’re looking at about 500 acres of ours. So, my thought on that is if Denny doesn’t feel that the entire ditch needs to be cleaned or drained at this point then…I understand that it needs money, it needs to be raised, that is life, but I guess I would rather see my money spent on fixing tiles to get them upgraded, then worry about the ditch later on rather than spending $5,000 on a ditch and you still got tiles collapsing. I mean, if the motor is going out on your car you aren’t going to change the wheels first. If I am not thinking correctly, then please someone correct me.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “How many acres are there total?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “752.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “And they own 500 of it?”

Mrs. Hall stated, “About 467 acres is what I came up with.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “

 

Mr. MacOwan asked Mr. Hall, “Have you looked at the outlet that goes into that ditch? Is it still above the dirt?”

 

Mr. Hall stated, “It’s still flowing good there.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “I got about 320 acres.”

 

Mrs. Hall stated, “That’s right, I was looking at the wrong number.”

 

Board Member Burton stated, “The one question came up about splitting them up and I’m not aware that we’ve ever done that in the past and I, with my own personal opinion, would like to weigh in on that. The open ditch and the tile are one and they are regulated and they need to stay that way regardless of how this turns out.”

 

Board Member Heimlich stated, “The open ditch is the outlet. So, it’s going to stay that way. Just from my view point it’s going to stay that way.”

 

Mr. Hunt stated, “I don’t think that’s the way it should be. The tile should be separated from the ditch…because that’s where you use the most money. It should have been done years ago.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “How big are those tiles?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “I don’t know what they are on Ralph’s. I know the Fleming & Harrison is about only an eight inch up by the highway and then of course it gets bigger. Ralph had a repair done in ’07 on a fifteen inch. So, I’d say the biggest is fifteen inch. I don’t know what size the outlets are.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “That $29,500 estimate you had was to go clear to the lake?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “That was to go…not clear to the lake, East Shafer Drive. And most of that was brush. The dipping is nothing.”

 

Mr. Hunt stated, “I say we go ahead and go with the $5,500 deal; that sounds like the most logical thing to do.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “South of 500 it’s got to be cleaned to get this tile from under the water. We could spend it up to 500 and do it, but as far as going north, if the tile aren’t under water I don’t think it needs cleaned. I was out there when it was dry and there wasn’t any water in the ditch, but south of the ditch there was still water so there must be an obstruction.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “I have a couple questions….from the place that you are starting there until you end, what’s the fall? And does that fall pretty well match there to the north or does it flatten out.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Good question…I didn’t get any grade to the north so I don’t know. We have two feet of fall in that 1,700 feet which is .21 percent grade.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “So how much dirt are you taking out of there then?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “About 2.2 feet up to the road…almost all the way.”

 

Chairman Schmierer explained, “I’ll tell you what we’re going to do with this. Counsel is going to go to work and investigate if the tiles can be split from the ditch and on separate maintenance. He’ll investigate the law and see where we’re at. Also, we’ve got to have a maintenance hearing on it to raise the maintenance so as soon as he gets back to us we’ll decide where we want to go with it. We’ll have to have a maintenance hearing scheduled and see what we’re going to raise it…”

 

Board Member Heimlich stated, “We’ve got to have a maintenance hearing regardless…”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “We can’t spend any money without the maintenance hearing. This was just a landowners get-together to see if we wanted to go ahead with the maintenance project or not.”

 

Mr. Hunt stated, “Can we have that today? This ditch needs cleaned now, not later…”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “The laws don’t work that way…I wish they did because there’s a lot of things I’d like to do today instead of waiting until next week. That goes on every day of the week and I realize what you’re saying…but we’ve got to do it by law. In the first place, to have a maintenance hearing you got to have a 30 day notice in the paper...you got to get the mail out on it and everything else. That’s not my law, that’s just the way the law reads. If you think something is slow, get in government, government is slower than anything.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “What did you say the variable rates from low to high were?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “$1.00 to $3.00 an acre.”

 

Board Member Heimlich asked, “And could you tell what that’s based on?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “The distance from the outlet, I believe.”

 

Board Member Heimlich stated, “The thing is that you’re still going to be because the people that are on the tile are still going to have to pay on the ditch because that’s the outlet.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “So, they’ll have two assessments.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “So you got two instead of one, so I don’t see where it’s going to be any more favorable, but we’ll look into it. It’s not a good deal for anyone.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “I believe the upper end pays the most.”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “What I’m seeing is if that ditch ever has to be completely cleaned, at over $30,000 and then now we’ve got the south end at $5,000 which, if you don’t do that, it’s going to continue to get worse and move on down the line. So, it’s the spectrum of do we spent $5,000 today or $30,000 on down the road. By spending that $5,000 it will delay…that silt is just going to keep moving down and even though people on the north side of 500 North aren’t having problems today…sooner or later they are going to have problems…if you address that now with good maintenance when that silt problem starts….”

Chairman Schmierer stated, “Well, we’ll have to get a hearing together to raise the rates and we have to figure out what we’re going to raise the rates…”

 

Mr. Wrede stated, “I’m in.”

 

The next item on the agenda is to open quotes on the B. M. Boulden Branch and Rankin & Luckey. Attorney Loy stated that three quotes had been solicited and two were received, one from Howe Excavating and one from County Line Tiling/Excavating.

 

Quotes were as follows:

Howe Excavating $ 4,998.75

County Line Tiling/Excavating $12,600.00

Board Member Heimlich asked, “What was your estimate?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “My estimate was about what the fund contained which was $5,480.00. It would be 53 cents per foot at that rate. There is a little brush on it up at the north end, but I think to my knowledge one contractor was already working out there on some tile so maybe that is why.

 

Board Member Heimlich made a motion to accept the bid on the B. M. Boulden Branch and Rankin & Luckey from Howe Excavating in the amount $4,998.75. Board Member Burton seconded the motion. Motion carried unanimously.

 

The next item on the agenda is the Maintenance Modification Hearing on the Earl Diener drain.

 

Mr. Sharp stated, “I would like some clarification as to where the modification of the Earl Diener starts?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “I’ve been out to talk to Mr. Sharp. He lives out on the north end. There has been a petition filed to clean the ditch and it’s been surveyed. I’ve come up with an estimate of $23,600.00 to clean 15,044 feet. That counts Branch 1 and Branch 2 and 7,680 on the main. If we were going to do it on maintenance, there is $4,100.00 in the fund. We discussed this at our last meeting and we sent out the letters…$5.00 an acre for four years. It collects $2,572 a year right now.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Is it a variable?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “No, it’s $2.00 an acre.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “And you’re going to raise it to $5.00 for four years?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “That should collect enough to pay for that cleanout and this is our hearing, so everyone in the watershed has been notified.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Does anyone have any questions on it?”

 

Mr. Fleck asked, “One question, I have sixty acres of woods, is that taxed?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “It’s a flat rate.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “Everything is flat rate now and it’s going to be kept flat rate.”

 

Mr. Fleck asked, “Is there a difference along the ditch from one end to the other? Though I think you just answered it…”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “No, its flat rate. It’s $2.00 an acre now and we’re going to raise it to $5.00 an acre for four years.”

 

Mr. Kiste asked, “I live next door to Jim (Sharp) and I question whether…it seems like used to be the maintenance would keep the trees and stuff off the ditch and they haven’t been doing that. I just wondered, it sounds like they got a little bit left that they haven’t been using…saving it up rather than going down the ditch and spraying it to kill it.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “Well, it’s been sprayed over the years I’m sure.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “There’s a little bit of brush on it.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “It’s been sprayed some, but after it gets so big it doesn’t matter how much you spray it, you’re not going to kill it. After we get it cleaned and get the brush off, then it will be sprayed next year. It doesn’t do any good to spray them if you’ve got brush on them, you know that. It has been sprayed before.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “You can tell it’s been cleaned.”

 

Mr. Sharp asked, “I’m trying to understand why I’m being assessed when none of this benefits my property. All of the modification is south of me.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Does the water run from your property to the south?”

 

Mr. Sharp replied, “No.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “We’re starting cleaning the ditch before we get to his property and the water runs through it and goes to the Honey Creek.”

 

Mr. Sharp stated, “I’m concerned as to if you increase the flowage of the ditch, when it hits Honey Creek it’s going to pond up and I’ve got household drains that come in to the ditch right there at the Earl Diener and Honey Creek junction and if we get a heavy enough rain it goes back up the tile and into my basement.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “There’s 3,000 feet of ditch that we’re not cleaning that goes through Mr. Sharp.”

 

Board Member Burton stated, “So, it’s part of the ditch, just not part of the project.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “Yeah. There is plenty of fall through him. I mean, there’s almost to much fall.”

 

Attorney Loy asked, “When you say household drain, what do you mean?”

 

Mr. Sharp replied, “Basement drain, it’s been there since 1936.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “I can’t answer how much waters going to come down, I’m sure….you’re going to get water no matter what we do. It’s probably going to come faster now…”

 

Mr. Kiste asked, “When is this project going to start?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “There will be a 20 day judicial review on it and then we’ll submit for quotes on the project.”

 

Chairman Schmierer stated, “It probably might not get done until fall because they’ll want to farm…”

 

Board Member Burton questioned, “To recap here, we’re going from $2.00 an acre to $5.00 and then after four years it will go back to $2.00?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “Right, that is what we planned.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, ‘Anything else on it?”

 

Mr. Sharp asked, “I have one more question…the 27.285 acres…how was that arrived at?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “That was historically…that is what you are getting assessed…historically that is what that was I didn’t change any of that.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett asked, “You don’t agree?”

 

Mr. Sharp replied, “No, that’s higher than the way I figured. I only have one tile that empties into the Earl Diener ditch.”

 

Board Member Burton stated, “The one thing that you are saying is that you don’t have that many acres going into the Diener ditch. If you subtract that acreage off it needs to be charged somewhere else…”

 

Mr. Sharp stated, “The Honey Creek…”

 

Board Member Heimlich stated, “He’s saying it goes direct to Honey Creek. The Diener would be assessed to the Honey Creek too.”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “Actually, we don’t start assessing until right here, so you got this assessed to the Diener…this is where it intersects the Honey Creek.”

 

Attorney Loy stated, “I feel the need to just mention that the drainage under our drainage code is meant for surface water run off and not for drains of sewers or basement drains…not for household sewer.”

 

Mr. Sharp stated, “It’s just a water drain, it’s not anything else. I have a leech bed for the bathroom and so forth.”

 

Attorney Loy stated, “I understand, but technically it’s for surface water run off only. There is no way to monitor…that is the intent of the drainage code. It would be impossible for the drainage board to monitor basement drains to see what’s going down.”

 

Mr. Sharp stated, “I’m more concerned on what’s coming up.”

 

Attorney Loy stated, “Well, I understand, but that drain shouldn’t be going into a regulated drain to begin with.”

 

Mr. Sharp asked, “Why not?”

 

Attorney Loy replied, “Because that’s the law. The watershed is determined by surface water run off and not by what amounts to an internal household sewer. You’re going to tell me that your toilet and that sort of thing goes into your leech bed, but…that’s irrelevant, you’ve got basically a household sewer going into a regulated drain and for the record I just want to make clear that it’s not a…the drainage board is not set up to regulated household sewer discharges which is what you are basically…this isn’t the sewer district. It’s not surface water, sir.”

 

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Any other questions on it?”

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “We did get one letter…”

 

Mr. Fleck asked, “What is the next step?”

 

The White County Drainage Board having heard and considered all the evidence and any objections submitted in these proceedings, the Chairman would now consider a motion finding that the current estimate of maintaining the Earl Diener #530 Drain is insufficient and the annual assessments for periodic maintenance of said drain should increase as proposed in these proceedings (Flat rate of $5.00 per acre/$10.00 minimum for four years). Board Member Burton so moved. Board Member Heimlich seconded the motion. Vote taken. The White County Drainage Board by a vote of 3 in favor and 0 opposed now hereby adopts the schedule of assessments originally filed herein. The White County Drainage Board issues its written findings and order declaring the proposed maintenance modification schedule in these proceedings established, a copy of which will be mailed to all owners affected.

 

Surveyor Sterrett stated, “I did forget to mention that my estimate included the repair of 16 outlets coming into the ditch.”

 

Board Member Heimlich stated, “So to answer Mr. Fleck’s question…”

 

Surveyor Sterrett replied, “We’ll open quotes at the first meeting in March, maybe. We have a 20 day judicial review….second meeting probably.”

Mr. Lachmund was in attendance to address the Drainage Board. He stated, “