By BRADEN LAMMERS
JEFFERSONVILLE — A final draft of the stormwater masterplan was presented to the Jeffersonville Drainage Board at its meeting Tuesday.
Minor changes were made to the plan that is designed to be a road map to address drainage problems in Jeffersonville, including the addition of a fact sheet for each project that explains its purpose, cost and steps to resolve the issue.
Jeffersonville City Engineer Andy Crouch said a subcommittee has met to review the projects in the masterplan and is expected to bring recommendations about which projects it will deem as priorities.
“I think we’ve formulated a plan to move forward,” he said. “I will be presenting that at the next meeting.”
But some questions about the plan, or lack thereof, were raised during the meeting.
Board Member Grant Morton offered his concerns about the drainage plans at River Ridge Commerce Center related to the Lick Run and Lentzier Creek watersheds and that the bulk of the water is currently being diverted to Lick Run.
“If we’re going to keep adding along [Ind.] 62 and not put it into Lentzier Creek where it runs down into the Ohio River, we’re going to be in some deep [trouble],” he said.
Crouch said the reason most of the water is headed toward Lick Run is related to where the development has occurred — along the frontage of Ind. 62 in the River Ridge Commerce Center.
“With the development in River Ridge, we have not jumped watersheds,” he said.
But he added that there are recommendations in the plans — many of which will be ordinances and policies yet to be enacted — to keep any drainage problems from occurring related to the development along Ind. 62 in River Ridge.
The drainage board also took a step to maintain compliance in several of its stormwater requirement by again contracting with Stantec Consulting Services Inc. The contract approved with Stantec could potentially pay the company $40,000 more than it received last year.
Robert Huckaby, senior project engineer with Stantec, said the contract last year totaled about $17,000 and this year’s deal was not to exceed $58,220.
However, Jeffersonville Stormwater Coordinator Deb Ashack explained that the scope of work has broadened this year and resulted in the price increase.
Among the provisions outlined in the contract was support for the Southern Indiana Stormwater Advisory Committee, which is a group designed to pool resources to meet Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System requirements, or MS4, with other area municipalities. In addition, the consultants will help prepare the city for an illicit discharge detention and elimination audit, which is also part of the MS4 program.
A permit renewal is also required for the MS4 program, which must be undertaken every five years. The final task outlined in the contract is a FEMA community rating system program, which helps implement proactive measures to manage properties and development within and near floodplains.
Ashack said that the FEMA community rating system program, once it is set up, will not cost additional money.
“I’m comfortable with this,” Ashack said of the contract amount. “We will probably not spend this much. At this point they don’t know what we’ve done already, so this is based on starting us from scratch.”
She explained that some of the information that will be used in the reports has already been gathered.
The contract was approved 8-1, with Board Member Steve Gill voting against.
After the meeting, Gill said that he voted against the contract because he believed the not-to-exceed amount was too high.
Subsequently, the MS4 budget for the drainage board that was requested totaling $30,000 was cut to $24,000.