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May 16, 2011


The White County Drainage Board convened at 10:30 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 Bradley Ward and Drainage Assistant Mary Sterrett.

Also in attendance were:
Sharon Watson-White County Soil and Water   
Howie Rodkey -Twin Lakes Student with Attorney Loy
Lynnora Blissitt
Terry Corso

The first item on the agenda was to approve the minutes from the May 2nd, 2011 White County Drainage Board Meeting.  Board Member Steve Burton so moved.  Board Member John Heimlich seconded the motion.  Motion carried unanimously.

Next on the agenda-Open Quotes on Fern McKillip Branch #1 Maintenance Project

Chairman Schmierer asked, “How many did we get?”

Surveyor Ward replied, “We only got one back of the four (4) we sent. ”

Attorney Loy stated, “Gutwein Bulldozing & Excavating quotes-Five Thousand, Four Hundred Dollars  ($5, 400.00).”

Surveyor Ward replied, “I had it estimated at Fifty-five Hundred Dollars ($5,500.00).”

Board Member Heimlich made a motion to accept the bid of Gutwein Bulldozing & Excavating of  Five Thousand, Four Hundred Dollars ($5,400.00).  Board Member Burton seconded the motion.  Motion carried unanimously.


Next on the agenda- Set Rates on the Joseph Kellenburger Maintenance Modification

Surveyor Ward replied, “That is the Dirk Fleck tile that we have been talking about the last couple of meetings. Right now it is at Four Dollars ($4.00) per acre and Five Dollar ($5.00) minimum.  To have it paid off in three (3) years I would think we would need Twelve Dollars ($12.00) per acre with a Twenty Dollar ($20.00) minimum. Right now the account sets in a negative balance.  This should help it out and  have a little bit left over at the end of the project. Assuming that nothing else would break down on that same….”

Chairman Schmierer replied, “We would have to have a hearing on it.  I think that is what we discussed before was tripling it and getting it there.  So go ahead… ”

Board Member Heimlich replied, “We did not set the rates.” 

Board Member Heimlich made the motion to set the rates on the Joseph Kellenburger Drain #553 Maintenance Modification at Twelve Dollars ($12.00) per acre and Twenty Dollar ($20.00) Minimum for Three (3) years.  Then return to the old rate of Four Dollars ($4.00) per acre and Five Dollar ($5.00) Minimum.  Motion seconded by Board Member Burton.  Motion carried unanimously.

Next on the agenda-Discuss The Walter Diener Branch of the Esther Fraser numerous out let repairs

Surveyor Ward stated, “Steve Diener was in and there is about eighteen (18) out lets on this mile and one half or so of ditch.  Some of them are worse than others but they all have issues.  Just ball parking it, doing some materials cost and labor.  I had it coming up to about Fifty-seven Hundred Dollars ($5,700.00) to do all eighteen (18) of them.  So, I didn’t know how you would want me to approach that.  Do I need to bid it out like we have been or….”

Board Member Heimlich asked, “How much?”

Surveyor Ward replied, “About Fifty-seven Hundred Dollars ($5,700.00) and about Three Thousand Dollars ($3,000.00) of it is materials.”

Chairman Schmierer stated, “We got a lot of repairs to be done on that haven’t we.  Has it just been numerous things that just didn’t get done?”

Surveyor Ward replied, “Just rusted out old metal things some could probably make it an other year or two or three but some are really bad.”

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Do we have money in that?”

Surveyor Ward replied, “It is paid by the Fraser there is plenty of money.  There is Sixty-eight Thousand Dollars ($68,000.00) in the account.”

Chairman Schmierer replied, “I don’t see any reason not to get it done then.”

Board Member Burton stated, “I would recommend with that small amount that we stay with the system of trying to use the guy or who is ever local or who is ever familiar verses trying to bring in some body.” 

Surveyor Ward replied, “I did not know if you wanted me to bid it or do it that way.”

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Do we need to quote it for Fifty-seven Hundred bucks ($5,700.00)?”

Attorney Loy replied, “Seven Hundred Dollars ($700.00)?”

Board Member Heimlich replied, “Fifty-seven Hundred Dollars ($5,700.00).”

Attorney Loy replied, “Ask for quotes.”

Board Member Burton replied, “It is just such a betterment to using some body in the area though.”

Chairman Schmierer replied, “Well, there is because if you get some body from some place else and not familiar with the area that is the only bad part you get.  I don’t think you will get to many….”

Surveyor Ward replied, “We could send to people in the Reynolds area.”

Chairman Schmierer answered, “Yeah, send them to some body over there.”

Attorney Loy said, “You pick who you want to send them to. You don’t have to receive three back.”

Surveyor Ward stated, “Similar to what we did here.”

Board Member Burton made a motion to send at least three invitations to quote for the repair of the Eighteen (18) out lets on the Walter Diener Ditch, Branch of the Esther Fraser Ditch #535 in Honey Creek Township.  Board Member Heimlich seconded the motion.  Motion carried unanimously.

Next on the agenda-The Henry Stewart Project

Surveyor Ward stated, “I just wanted to let the Board know that we have received all five (5) letters back from the land owners, signed.”

Chairman Schmierer asked, “That is down at Brookston?”

Surveyor Ward replied, “Yeah, south of town.”

Chairman Schmierer holding a copy of the letter signed by the land owners Mr. James Ray Jewell and Mrs. Barbara Jane Jewell, which had the following message written on it.

“MUST BE NOTIFIED 24 TO 48 HOURS BEFORE YOU START WORK SO I CAN BE THERE.  WE HAVE A TILE FEEDING INTO THE DITCH THAT TAKES FLASH FLOOD WATER FROM AROUND THE HOUSE.  SO IF I’M NOT THERE YOU DON’T HAVE MY PERMISSION ONLY IF I’M NOTIFIED SO I CAN BE THERE TO SHOW YOU.  MY TILE DOES MORE THAN YOUR CLEANING THE DITCH WILL EVER DO.”  (Copy signed letter attached to file minutes)

Chairman Schmierer said, “She is telling you that she wants to know when you are coming in across their property.”
Surveyor Ward replied, “Yes! I will let her know when we will be there.  I don’t know if you want to add any thing?  Just that we are ready to get down there and figure out exactly what we are going to do and how much to spend on it.”

Chairman Schmierer replied, “I think if you go down there and work on it you are going to end up with an open ditch, pretty well open down through there.  You are going to have people complain because they got their property cut in to, I am afraid. It use to be didn’t it?”

Lynnora Blissitt replied, “It is open at our property line then goes north other wise it is tile obviously from the Forty-three (State Hwy 43) from…road.  It would be nice to get it cleaned out it keeps eroding away and it is filled with silt.  This rain we had this past you know few weeks ago, didn’t flood it as bad as it has been before.  It has been in the neighbors to the north of us. It has been in their garage I do know that, in front of their air conditioners.  So, I can’t see why they are stalling on signing on finding a fix, would be more to their advantage. We are a little bit higher probably.”

Board Member Burton asked, “Originally it was more of a water way then it is now?”

Lynnora Blissitt replied, “Yes!”

Chairman Schmierer stated, “At one time when McCalls lived there, at one time there was a ditch that went down the back of his place, they had to cross a ditch.”

Lenora Blissitt replied, “Yeah, the reason I say we are probably higher is because we could take our lawn mower across where the tile started.  Like the neighbors all to the north had to have some type of bridge or some thing.”

Chairman Schmierer replied, “He had a bridge across there.”

Lynnora Blissitt stated, “Yeah, I know McCalls did when they lived there.”

Chairman Schmierer replied, “It was dug out and that is what I’m saying you are probably going to have to go down a ways to get a ditch cleaned through there.”

Surveyor Ward said, “A foot and one half (1½ )or two (2), I think of silt when Denny (Retired Surveyor) was down there.”

Lynnora Blissitt replied, “That was about six (6) years ago now.”

Surveyor Ward replied, “That was Two Thousand and Five (2005).”

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Did Tabor Brooks sign off on it?”

Lynnora Blissitt replied, “He obviously hasn’t said any thing.”

Surveyor Ward stated, “We just sent where the tile out lets, the end of our jurisdiction.  Just the five (5) land owners north of there which is about a thousand (1,000) feet.”

Chairman Schmierer replied, “Well, Denny (Retired Surveyor) and I were down at Tabor Brooks one time and he was complaining that he did not want the back yard cut or some thing.  I can’t remember the whole conversation.”

Surveyor Ward stated, “No, we did not send him a letter. I think we are ready to start.”

Chairman asked. “What else do you have for us?”

Surveyor Ward replied, “On the Errol  Westfall we are getting real close to sending out the letters on the Maintenance Modification.  There is a new system in the computer and we are working with that.”

Surveyor Ward continued.  “Then on the Rayman Ditch, Kenny Rayman stopped in.  Along Eighteen (State Highway 18) where Mike Ezra left the rocks and dirt on the ditch bank, he was complaining about that.  I don’t know if there was agreement between the previous Surveyor, Mile Ezra and the land owner to do that.  I don’t know what I can do about that.”

Chairman Schmierer asked, “Who was the dirt on, Thompson?”

Board Member Burton replied, “I think there was, I happened to be at that meeting.”

Surveyor Ward continued, “I thought there was but…..”

Chairman Schmierer asked, “On the banks of Thompson, was it on Thompson?”

Board Member Burton replied, “Yeah, on Eighteen (State Road 18) on Thompson.  Jon was there and he was mutually ok at that point with that section. That would just be minimal clean up.  I know to start with there was debate on how much work he needed to do to start with.  I think Mike (Contractor Ezra) did a little more than what was originally planned and that is where the compromise came in.”

Surveyor Ward asked, “How does that ditch look, I have not been down there.  Does it look better than I thought it was going to look?”

Board Member Burton stated, “It is not perfect. I toured the Gutwein Project on the Roudebush you can obviously tell there was a different company doing that clean up verses what Mike did and I don’t want to throw him under the bus.  Not perfect but maybe acceptable.”

Surveyor Ward replied, “He sent in his bill last week either Monday or Tuesday so I was going to try to get down there.”

Board Member Burton asked, “Was it in the contract that he is required to pick up rocks of a certain size?”

Surveyor Ward replied, “Yes, twelve (12) inches or larger are suppose to be buried.  It is the same line that has always been in the contract. Twelve (12) inches or larger are suppose to be buried three feet below grade.”

Chairman Schmierer asked if there was any thing else for the White County Drainage Board.  With no response from the audience Chairman Schmierer adjourned the May 16th, 2011 Drainage Board Meeting.