Carmel drainage lawsuit dropped


By Karen Kennedy

Carmel City Councilor Ron Carter confirmed that the pending lawsuit between Rick Hall, a Crooked Stick neighborhood resident, and the Hamilton County Drainage Board has been dropped.

In February of last year, Current in Carmel reported on a complicated battle between neighbors, the Carmel City Council and the Hamilton County Drainage Board in a special report entitled “Muddied Waters.”

Hall had inadvertently gotten wind of the fact that the county had plans to remedy drainage problems of neighbors to the south of his property by spending nearly $150,000 to cut down trees on his land and run approximately 1,000 feet of pipe north to discharge into a small creek behind his home.

In October 2011, the Carmel City Council got involved. They sent a letter to County Commissioner Christine Altman, a member of the drainage board, questioning the county’s rationale in becoming involved in private homeowners’ drainage issues and clarifying that this particular situation did not fall under the umbrella of the city’s annexation settlement agreement with Southwest Clay Township residents.

As a result, the county then claimed that the city council should have to foot the bill, which it refused to do citing the fact that “occasional flooding of two residences is not something that should be fixed with public funds.”

In the midst of all this, Hall filed a lawsuit against the county to temporarily halt plans to start cutting down trees and digging trenches. He also produced copies of letters from other Crooked Stick neighborhood homeowners who stated that they did not believe there was a drainage problem in their neighborhood that merited county involvement.

“The county has rescinded their order for the work and undesignated the creek behind Hall’s house as a legal drain,” Carter said.

“The county and I have entered into a mutual decision to rescind this lawsuit,” Hall said.

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