107 W. Locust Street Courthouse

Boonville, Indiana

March 9, 2005

3:00 P.M.



The Warrick County Drainage Board met in regular session with Carl Jay Conner, President; Phillip H. Baxter, Vice-President; Don Williams, Secretary; James E. Niemeyer, Surveyor; Robert A. Wilson, Deputy Surveyor and David A. Zengler, Attorney for the Board.


Cheryl D. Embry recorded the minutes.


President Carl Conner called the meeting of March 9, 2005 to order.




Carl Conner: First on the Agenda is the minutes of February 23, 2005.


Don Williams: Mr. President, I have one minor change, which I have already explained to Cheryl about, under the very first page where I speak the first time, its says “Right, those minutes if you recall, last time Phil wasn’t here and you were not at that meeting, that’s why” and of course if Phil wasn’t here and you weren’t here we couldn’t have a meeting, so where it says Phil wasn’t here, it should say “Phil was” and Cheryl has already got that, that’s my only correction.


Carl Conner: Okay, so we’re changing wasn’t to was. Did you have any comments Phil?


Phil Baxter: No


Carl Conner: Having no other corrections, can I have a motion to approve the minutes of February 23, 2005 with the one correction from wasn’t to was?


Phil Baxter: So moved


Don Williams: Second


Carl Conner:  Have a second, all in favor state by saying Aye.  “Aye”


Phil Baxter: Aye


Don Williams: Aye


Carl Conner: Passes three to zero, the next item on the agenda is Esche Ditch, discussion to adopt Esche Ditch as a legal drain.




Jim Niemeyer: We made a investigation in the field and I went to the primary utilities involved in that area, American Water, SIGECOM, Vectren and City of Newburgh and I’ve got maps showing where all of the primary facilities are located.


Carl Conner: Now, Jim is this of the entire ditch or is this just a portion that we were looking at doing in phase I?


Jim Niemeyer: This is the portion your interested in, I believe, because when you get down in here to the Southern part, you start getting into wetlands that I don’t think should be involved. (He showed them on the map as he was speaking) Here’s the church and here’s the school and here is Sharon Road. Here is SIGECOM cable North of Sharon Road and there is Vectren and my belief that all those utilities are on the West side of the ditch and there is a pipe line crossing here at the intersection of what you see is Rosewood Lane and Sharon Road. There’s an 8-inch cast iron main, there’s a 2-inch Vectren gas line, that’s like I told them, in the event that we did go out there to do any work, they certainly would be notified and have the utilities properly located.


Don Williams: Well, it looks like its fairly clear.


Jim Niemeyer: Yeah, so I don’t think there’s really any problem just a few short lines and stubs farther on South but I don’t think they are anything to be concerned with.


Don Williams: Did they say on Sharon Road how deep that Vectren gas line and that water line was? Do you know that yet?


Jim Niemeyer: I told him there was a line exposed there in that ditch and it doesn’t belong to either utility that I know of, unless its that Vectren gas line inside of a casing and that was all I asked for, I didn’t ask for specifics, I said right now we’re not necessarily interested in depth but we want to know if anything is there.


Carl Conner: So, it looks like its not going to be really too bad of a deal.


Jim Niemeyer: No


Carl Conner: We’re looking at if we do any work we’re going to start over behind the old, what’s the name of that subdivision?


Phil Baxter: South Broadview


Carl Conner: South Broadview, we’re going to start behind South Broadview and work…...


Jim Niemeyer: South


Carl Conner: Okay and how far South?


Jim Niemeyer: We’ll probably wind up down here, cause from there South there is nothing.


Carl Conner: Okay, so we would be down about to the highway.


Jim Niemeyer: You really do get into this……..


Don Williams: Now, you’ve got a drawing of this house here, you don’t mean that to be there do you?


Jim Niemeyer: That house is there, but this just shows the gas line, the service going to it.


Don Williams: Oh, that’s just the gas line, ok


Jim Niemeyer: And they made it over he said last year, Indiana American Water installed a 20-inch high density polyethylene pipe there as you can see, but we won’t get into that I don’t believe we will, cause if we get very far South of there we tie into the woods.


Carl Conner: We wouldn’t do all of that work in one year any way, we would do it in phases. I’m just curious what would be the first phase from South Broadview?


Jim Niemeyer: I’ll tell you the worst part is from Sharon Road down to here, there is really a lot of brush in there.


Carl Conner: And you can get that done in one?


Jim Niemeyer: Oh yeah


Phil Baxter: Sharon Road to where?


Jim Niemeyer: Sharon Road south to where you see that Vectren Electric line.


Carl Conner: Down about Highway 66.


Jim Niemeyer: Really, this is in nice shape up here.


Carl Conner: So, you don’t think there’s any work that needs to be done?


Jim Niemeyer: Not in there, no.


Carl Conner: Not even behind the subdivision there South Broadview?


Jim Niemeyer: I don’t think so.

Robert Wilson: There’s not much you can do in there, so many utilities in there.


Carl Conner: Well, I’ve been in there from time to time looking at some of those ditches and they look like to me they are in pretty bad shape, but apparently I’ve never looked at this one, but I’ll take your word for it.


Jim Niemeyer: We haven’t gone out there and walked every foot of it, but this has the worst problem.


Carl Conner: So, what is the next step we have to take from a legal perspective to get this drain, make it a legal one?


Jim Niemeyer: We need send out all the landowners form letters for signature and I believe it’s 10% of those that are affected need to be signed.


Carl Conner: Then after that step is completed, then do we as a Board have to make a recommendation to the Commissioners?


Jim Niemeyer: I think that is the case.


Carl Conner: And then after that’s done, then we can go out for bids and get some work done.


David Zengler: You would set it for…after the petition, what he’s talking about is the petition, you’d set it for hearing, notify everybody and set it for hearing and have a public hearing, yeah.


Carl Conner: Have a public hearing, yeah, okay.


David Zengler: Then what you decide at public hearing, yeah proceed.


Carl Conner:  Then I guess the next step is what, he suggests is contact the……..


David Zengler: And I’ve looked at that…. Procedure was started….I assume that you’ll have to be reviewed cause we’re going to take off some of the landowners.


Jim Niemeyer:  We did review everything in it’s entirety and we can add or subtract as the case may be.


David Zengler: I think originally it was done for the whole length of the ditch,


Carl Conner: Is there any questions, comments….then I would assume that we probably need to have a motion, right, to direct the County Surveyor to begin contacting landowners, do I have a motion to do such? Hearing none I will make a motion that we direct the County Surveyor to start the process of contacting the landowners that are adjacent to this ditch, do I have a second?

Phil Baxter: I’ll second it.


Carl Conner: I have a second, all in favor state by saying aye  “Aye”


Don Williams: Aye


Phil Baxter: Aye


Carl Conner: Passes three to zero. Thank you Jim. Don, was kind enough to bring to my attention that I can’t see very well, that I skipped over the first item on the agenda and that was in regards to Orth-Schmitt complaint.




Jim Niemeyer: Yes, we visited the site of the complaint last week and the work was not totally finished.


Carl Conner: Have they started the work, though?


Jim Niemeyer: I don’t believe so


Carl Conner: Okay, anyone here like to address that issue, if so come forward and state your name.


Someone from the audience started talking out of earshot of the microphone.


Carl Conner: Sir, if you have some comments, would you please come up here and state your name for the record and then we’ll have some discussion.


Bill Schmitt: My name is Bill Schmitt and I own this farm, the ditch is out in my field. I don’t know what your referring to, ain’t started, there is no restrictions in that ditch, I don’t know what your……


Jim Niemeyer: Well, the last time, when we visited the site, the ditch was full of trees and saplings, not all of it, there was about a two or three hundred stretch that was needed to be cleaned out and right at near the intersection of the railroad in the ditch there, the ditch has been blocked off and the water can’t get through.


Bill Schmitt: That ditch has never went through there, that ditch is not to drain through there. The ditch runs down along side the tracks, I don’t understand, that ditch has not been blocked, that ditch has never been opened through there and I don’t….if you want a ditch down through there, then I suppose the County needs to take it over and put it on the property line there.


Jim Niemeyer: There is an obstruction on the north south end of the ditch which runs north south on the west side of your property.

Bill Schmitt: First of all that was not a ditch, that was a berm built there, but when they dug the berm there, they created a cavity, that never did run up into that ditch, that ditch comes under the railroad tracks and goes east, that ditch does not go south, why would the ditch go south just to come back east.


Jim Niemeyer: The water runs south towards the legal drainage ditch, which is to the south.


Bill Schmitt: The water runs to the east and hits the creek down right along the side of the railroad tracks, there is a ditch runs right down along side the tracks down through there, its on the railroad easement.


Jim Niemeyer: I agree there is a swale or a ditch there, but the water has to run from the railroad south toward the designated drainage way and it can’t get by the obstruction on….


Bill Schmitt: The big creek that the water drains to is east of that point.


Jim Niemeyer: Well, it doesn’t look to me like its that way.


Bill Schmitt: That is where the water has….that’s where the ditch was dug and that’s where it drained to, that ditch talking south there, was never a ditch there, water did run down through there, I’ve owned that property since 1990. When they come through and dug out the big ditch back there, they filled that ditch all the way up down on the south end