Minutes – Monday, April 1, 2019

The Combined Lake Delhi Recreational Facility and Water Quality District

Monday, April 1, 2019

4:30 pm

Lake Delhi Trustees Administration Building

Delhi, IA


The regular meeting of the Combined Lake Delhi Recreational Facility and Water Quality District was called to order at 4:30 pm by President Staebell.

Trustees present: Davidson, Burger and Staebell;. Havertape, Leonard, Gifford & Herman present by phone (Note: Herman left at 5:10 and Gifford left at 6:10)

Trustees absent: None

Visitors: LuAnn Weber, Gary Weber, Tom Gatto, Travis Niehaus, Paul Roussell, Bill Ries, Burce Schneider, Margie Schneider, Larry Aschbrenner, Ben Kindred, Chris Stender, Dan Reyner, Dan Recker, Greg Steffen, Cindy Blonigan, Dick Blonigan, Jason Wenger, Marty Pottebaum, Chris Jones, Al Bauer, Diane Bauer, Doug Bauer, Ben Pasker, Joe Vorwald, Mark Kintzle, Dick Recker, Daryl Hogan, Laurie Kramer

A motion to approve the agenda was made by Davidson, second by Burger. Motion carried.

The first agenda item was consideration and possible action on sale of the District’s barge. Staebell stated that the District went out for bid on the barge last fall. At that time there was no interest from the public. The Trustees now have an interested party who has submitted a quote to purchase the barge.. Staebell asked if there were any other interest to purchase. There being none, he read the proposal for purchase of the barge. Daryl Hogan from Hillside Manufacturing provided a proposal to purchase the barge for $1,500 contingent upon seeing the bottom of the barge and ensuring that there are no rust holes. He stipulated that if there are rust holes he would not purchase the barge. Burger asked Hogan what area of the barge would he be looking at for rust. Hogan indicated he would be looking for rust at the bottom of round barrels. Hogan said he it was scraped out it would be worth around $2,000. Leonard asked Herman if he was comfortable from legal aspect with FEMA is he comfortable with the sale. Herman said because it’s personal property and previously asking for bids there was no need for the District to go through a public hearing for bid. As far as FEMA is concerned, the only thing they might ask for is the $1,500 but considering how tied up FEMA is with other national issues, it’s not a concern. Davidson stated that the last time we offered the barge for sale it was “as is” condition. This proposal now has stipulations attached. He has concerns about that. Hogan said he would be okay with accepting the barge in “as is” condition. A motion was made by Burger to sell the barge to Hillside Manufacturing. Leonard second provided we get a Bill of Sale noting the amount of $1,500 and a timeframe of moving the barge. Hogan stated moving the barge will depend on the weather. He said he was hopeful to move it within a month. He also stated that rebuilding the barge would probably be complete by the end of the boating season or next year.

The next agenda item was consideration and possible action on quotes for debris removal. Staebell recapped the event that occurred March 14th that caused a lot of damage and loss of property on the lake. The first thing that was done was to gather an inventory of items that were lost in that event. The major location of damage was done from the Cedar’s down past Freddie’s Beach. Staebell noted that the Delhi Fire Department was brought in to help locate submerged items and mark items in the lakebed. Joe Vorwald, from the Delhi Fire Department, gave the Trustees an update on what the department found when they scoured the lake. He stated they found nothing up-river from Cedars. Most of the inventory is on the shore and they are damaged. They found seventeen lifts that were submerged. The department didn’t mark anything that was visible and said most of those items are not in the channel. Most of the inventory was in the Schneider area and Freddy’s Beach. He noted the damage really stopped above Linden Acres. They did find a lift by Camp O but after that there was nothing under the water.   It was noted that a lift was also located down river from Lost Beach. Herman stated he took a boat ride on Sunday and saw a lot of damage and noticed a number of things out in the lake a ways that were not marked.   He asked Vorwald if he had any idea how many of those items are above water. Vorwald stated he thought around 15 above water but 30 lifts total. Leonard asked if they fire department was able to get all the way down to the dam. Vorwald said they did go down that far and there’s debris floating in that area.   He also stated they first pass they did through the lake was done with their old sonar and they weren’t happy with the results so they purchased a new sonar with a live camera. They went through the lake again and didn’t find any additional debris.   He also said they spent about 40 hours over seven days and did multiple swaps around the lake. Staebell thanked Vorwald and the fire department for providing their service to the lake. Vorwald stated that their diving team would be available for additional assistance if needed.

Before Staebell provided information regarding the two quotes for the debris removal he asked if there was any other interest from those in the audience to provide a quote to remove debris. There being no interest, Staebell reviewed the two quotes.

Staebell asked Leonard to provided information regarding the two companies that he reached out to for quotes. The first company that came out to the lake was Newt Marine Service out of Dubuque. Dan Reyner, from the LDRA, met with their representatives to see the scope of work needed to be done.   The key components of the proposal included mobilization costs, an hourly rate for debris removal, capabilities of their equipment and a potential start date. Leonard stated Newt Marine’s proposal was $67,500 for mobilization and $10,500 per an eight-hour day or $1,950 per hour. Part of the reason their proposal is so high is because of the size of their equipment they would have to pull everything before the Hartwick Bridge and re-mobilized to get all the way downstream. They could begin asap.

The second proposal is from Frentress Marina in East Dubuque. Their mobilization cost is $25,000 with an hourly rate of $400 for debris removal. They can begin work between 3-5 days after a contract is signed. The only concern for Frentress Marina is they would need to have the work completed by April 20th because of their busy schedule.

Leonard stated there are other components to consider. One of those is deciding on locations to deposit the debris. The other is deciding on how the debris is removed since having these companies completely remove all the debris would be very costly.

Staebell stated that he felt one thing the trustees need to consider is while we are going through the process of removing the docks and lifts having the contractor deal with trees and other potential hazards in the water should be considered. Leonard state he spoke with both firms and they are willing to go all the way up river to remove that kind of debris. Davidson agreed that catching debris upstream is important but noted that all the debris at the dam should be taken care while we have the equipment to do so. Herman asked if any of the local marinas have been contacted to collect any of the items out in the lakebed. Both Chris Stender and Al Bauers said they have had calls from residents for help. Herman said a concern is with the upcoming mobilization people who plan to retrieve their docks/lifts will need to get that done very soon. It was noted that from the inventory listed there about three homeowners who plan to retrieve their items. Gifford asked if the trustees should consider charging homeowners for collecting their debris. Staebell said that is something that will be considered in the near future. Burger asked Stender if the people who have contacted him know where their docks/lift are location. Stender said most of the people he has talked to do not know where their items are. He expressed concern over what has not been located. Burger said he was concerned because if the trustees hire Frentress and they need to be off the lake by April 20th will there be time to do additional sonar runs to catch more debris that’s submerged. Leonard stated that both firms have sonar to use during the process. Staebell asked Vorwald if the fire department would be available to assist in doing additional sonar runs. Vorwald said they would be available to help.   For clarity, Staebell stated that anything that’s out in the lakebed 100’ or more will be removed by the contractor. Stender stated he felt there were probably fewer items that need to be removed by the contract. He also said given the cost to have a contract come out and remove debris the District should look at getting a barge that would be available for future situations like this. He noted having their own barge and having volunteers would save the District money in the long run. Davidson stated he felt community involvement is crucial.

Staebell asked for public comment.

Al Bauer stated that while the contractor will be working to remove lakebed items B & B Sports and the Hartwick Marina can take care of a lot of the shoreline work.

Larry Aschbrenner – Does the District have insurance to cover the expense? The answer is no because the property damaged is not the District’s. The reason the District is taking on the expense to remove the debris is because it’s a boating hazard. Staebell noted because the District is taking on the expense to remove the debris there’s going to be some discussion on charging the homeowner’s something for removing their property from the lake.

Mark Kintzle – Is there any smaller equipment that could be used versus the big excavators that are being proposed for use? Staebell said that he was not aware that any inquiry had been made regarding smaller equipment. A question for the contractor may be utilizing other equipment once they see the scope of work to be done.

Chris Jones – Has anyone seen the barge to make sure we know what it’s going to do?   Staebell read the description of what the mobilization included.

Dan Reyner said when he took Jason from Newt Marina for a tour of the lake he asked him how big the platform would be that they would bring in. He was told 10’ x 40’ dock section and that there would be four of them. He stated it was not only for the excavator but for the debris they pull out of the lake.

Bruce Schneider suggested to they contract start upriver to better utilize their time and save some cost to the District. Leonard also suggested that locations be established to best utilize the contractor’s time as well. Schneider asked how the contractor will off-load the material. He said they could use his area but he needed to understand how this would be handled. Leonard said he would speak with the approved contractor about how they would handle getting the materials to the shore.

Marty Pottebaum said because time is of the essence and that the District needs to be sure that the contractor understands that if there is something they can’t get with their equipment then need to find the equipment that will work. Staebell asked Leonard to clarify this issue with the approved contractor.

Margie Schneider ask how much the District has budgeted for this type of expense. Staebell stated that in the budget there’s $35,000 for debris removal and also $60,000 for Lake Bed Mitigation of which $40,000 is already designated. So the total amount is around $55,000.

With no other questions, Davidson made a motion to accept the proposal from Frentress Lake Marina noting the work will include not only removing the debris from the docks and lifts but other potentially dangerous material such as trees and that they take care of all the debris located at the dam and around the cabling at the dam.  Burger seconded the motion.  A question was asked about dealing with the wood and trees at the dam. While this is not a part of the motion it was suggested that the material be dragged to the District’s ramp area south of the dam to be cut up later on. Pottebaum said he would be available to truck out the material if we could get volunteers to help cut up the material. Gifford asked if a part of the motion should include looking at charging back a part of the expense to the homeowners. Staebell stated that will be part of another discussion. Gifford said he feels the Board needs to make a decision very soon. Leonard said his concern is that a property owner needs to know in advance if there’s gong to be a charge in case they are planning to remove their own property. Margie Schneider expressed concern that this was an act of mother nature and to distinguish whose property is whose would be a nightmare. Staebell ask for a roll call vote.

Burger – Yes, because of the timing. He would like to look into purchasing a barge in the future but noted there’s also a liability to owning a barge.

Davidson – Yes

Leonard – Yes noting we need a strategy for future needs but we need to get this taken care of now.

Gifford – Yes

Havertape – Yes

Herman – Signed off

Staebell – Yes

Motion carried.

Staebell asked Leonard to communicate to Frentress and get something contractual for Staebell to sign.

Staebell spoke to the Trustees about the communication document that ‘s being developed to present to the community. He read the proposed document to those in attendance and noted the document will be posted as soon as it is finalized. Within the document aris a timeframe for the debris removal to take place and directions to property owners who lost personal property and steps that will be taken to remove items in the lake bed. Burger stated he felt that damaged property within the 100’ mark should be considered for removal by Frentress it is not owned by the property owner. Burger asked Stender and Bauers if they are going to go out and mark the items the people have asked them to take care of. Stender said they will have to do that.   Burger said it’s very difficult to identify lifts and it’s going to be hard to charge back to the property owner for a lift unless there are specific markings. Burger stated he’s not in favor of charging back to the home owner. Leonard stated timing is important if we need to involve the ski club for assistance. Staebell asked the question “do we want to give owners a certain amount of time to reclaim their items and if so should we charge them at that point in time”.   Pottebaum stated most material that is going to be removed will be junk and we should not people to sift through the material to take whatever they want. Pottebaum reiterated that time is of the essence.

Dick Recker said if someone identifies their lift they should donate an amount back to the District.

Staebell stated the document was drafted to be communication going forward to be clear on dates, timing and the responsibilities of property owners. The plan is to post on the website, sent out through email, etc.

Margie Schneider asked the boat ramps would be closed during the time of the clean up. Leonard said he spoke with the Delaware Co. Conservation Department and the DNR. Neither one plan to close down any access area. They also do not to plan to take any action regarding signage. Bruce Schneider asked if we could make a request because activity on the lake will slow down the debris removal process.  Leonard suggested sending an email blast for “no wake” activity. Staebell asked what kind of timeframe do the Trustees want to allow the marinas or individuals to go out and mark and have access to their items. Jason Wenger from Burrington Group stated that given Frentress needs to be off the lake by April 20th the District should consider getting them started on April 8th. Any rain days could hold up their work as well.   Leonard said their goal is to be out by April 20th but Staebell stated that date is not listed on their proposal so we need to be sure we get that in writing from them. Staebell stated that because Frentress Marina plan to start their work on Monday, April 8th, home owners who plan to take care of their own lifts/docks need to get them marked as soon as possible. Another concern is when does the District make sure items marked for removal to, in fact, get removed. Davidson and Burger said they would be available for oversight. Leonard said his concern is about homeowners who plan to remove their property on their own and if they don’t get it done what’s going to happen. Leonard suggested giving them until the middle of next week to get their items removed. Margie Schneider ask about property that went downstream and ended up on someone else’s property. How will that be addressed? Staebell stated if it’s not marked it will be removed.  Staebell expressed a concern on how we identify the property as not being the homeowners. Another concern was for those homeowners who live out of state and how they handle their property. Staebell said that’s why he’d like to give them more time. Davidson said we have to move forward despite these issues. After additional discussion, Staebell said it seems the consensus is that homeowners will need to contact us by Monday, April 8th if they do not want their property removed.. Davidson stated that the homeowners who are going to be taking care of their property need to tag it stating “do not remove” and list their name so that it’s left alone. Anything not tagged will be removed. As a point of clarification, homeowners are expected to take of their property no matter it’s condition if it’s on their shoreline. The only exception would be items that landed on a property owner’s area that doesn’t belong to them. Then the District would remove it if they know about it.

Bruce Schneider said he could provide an area to take care of trees.   He said he could load the wood and take it away to burn.

With no other comment, Burger made a motion to adjourn and Davidson seconded the motion. Motion carried.

Meeting adjourned at 6:20 p.m.


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