The Board of Commissioners of the Bossier Levee District met in regular session on Wednesday, June 10, 2020, at 10:00 a.m. at the Levee Board Office, 3404 Industrial Drive, Bossier City, Louisiana.
The President, Tim Larkin, called the meeting to order.
ROLL CALL PRESENT: ALLEY, BANTLE, LARKIN, MONTGOMERY, MOORE, AND WEBB
The first order of business was opening prayer by Commissioner Webb and the Pledge of Allegiance by Commissioner Larkin.
On motion by Alley, seconded by Webb, and unanimously passed, the Board dispensed with the reading of the minutes and approved the minutes at the regular Board Meeting held on March 11, 2020.
REQUESTS BY VISITORS:
Patrick DeSilva with GeoEngineers appeared to discuss a permit request submitted for approval to drill nine soil sample borings for their proposed Red River pipeline crossing project.
On motion by Alley, seconded by Montgomery, and unanimously passed on recommendation from the Applications Committee the Board approved the permit application NO. # 2020 – 16, to drill nine soil sample borings for their proposed Red River pipeline crossing project subject to further concurrence from DOTD and the CORPS. No comments from the public.
The Board was informed that Ryan Estess with Raley & Associates, Inc. previously had submitted a permit request to clean, muck, and regrade an existing ditch on the south side of St. Charles Court Villages, Unit #9 to discharge into Willow Chute which was approved administratively by the BLD President, Tim Larkin and the Operations Coordinator, Mark Long during the COVID 19/CORONA pandemic. Mr. Long stated that written approval was still needed from the Parish due to the effect on a detention pond and the pending approval from DOTD as well. The BLD office was closed to the public during April and May and was therefore unable to satisfy a quorum to meet.
The Board of Commissioners were also updated that Tim Larkin and Mark Long previously reviewed and administratively approved a plat for Myers Road Estates that was prepared by Charlie Coyle with Coyle Engineering Co, Inc. and submitted for review by Gopika on behalf of the MPC.
Mr. Kurt Nixon of Nixon Engineering discussed his research and gave an update on the Red Chute Levee Mitigation Report. No comments from the public.
The Board continued a discussion and reviewed a report/email regarding alternatives for proceeding with the Sylvia & Jim Adger v. Bossier Levee District case received from Mr. Robert Kennedy, Jr., attorney at Cook, Yancey, King, and Galloway.
On motion by Montgomery, seconded by Bantle, and unanimously passed, and following the recommendation of the Applications Committee the Board stated that the secretary would schedule a follow up meeting with Mr. Kennedy and Tim Larkin to further discuss options of legal action. No comments from the public.
The Board was updated on a change order request received from Testament Construction for the cost associated with extending the required insurances an additional four months due to weather and readiness/delayed conditions for the Improvements to the Red Chute Levee Project – state project NO. #H011353 in the amount of $21,112.98. President Tim Larkin drafted and mailed a letter to Mr. Randy Denmon asking him to advise Testament Construction that the Bossier Levee District requested that the application be submitted at the end of the contract, once the work has been completed and the total contract work-days are known. No action taken at this time nor comments from the public.
The Board discussed a draft of the Red River Levee Access Right of Way located on the Stinson property.
On motion by Bantle, seconded by Moore and unanimously passed, the Board gave President Tim Larkin and Mark Long the authority to pursue the agreement with the Stinson family in which the Bossier Levee District would reimburse them for $6,000.00 for the use of the access, if they were to accept. No comments from the public.
The Board continued a discussion regarding adopting a formal resolution authorizing the President, Mr. Tim Larkin to request the LA Department of Natural Resources, Office of the State Mineral Board to lease certain mineral interests that may be owned by the BLD and to execute all documents. (This lease was originally discussed in March, however the BLD’s legal counsel, Mr. Tom Arceneaux suggested that additional wording was needed.)
On motion by Bantle, seconded by Stelly and unanimously passed, the Board adopted the following resolution:
A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE PRESIDENT TO REQUEST THE LOUISIANA DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES, OFFICE OF THE STATE MINERAL BOARD, TO LEASE CERTAIN MINERAL INTERESTS THAT MAY BE OWNED BY THE BOSSIER LEVEE DISTRICT AND TO EXECUTE ALL DOCUMENTS RELATIVE TO SAME; TO APPROVE THE SUBMISSION OF A REQUEST AND APPLICATION TO THE STATE MINERAL BOARD; AND TO OTHERWISE PROVIDE WITH RESPECT THERETO.
WHEREAS, the Bossier Levee District (“District”) may own mineral rights underlying the property (“Property”) described below: Lot Eight (8) in the Northeast Quarter of Section Five (5), Township 16 North, Range 12 West, Bossier Parish, Louisiana, within the traverse of Red Chute Lake; and
WHEREAS, the District desires to lease its interest in the Property for oil, gas, and other minerals subject to conditions contained herein; and
WHEREAS, pursuant to La. R. S. 30:151, et seq., the District may, by resolution, direct the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, Office of the State Mineral Board (“Mineral Board”) to lease the District’s interest in the Property for such purposes; and
WHEREAS, the District desires to avail itself of the provisions of the aforesaid statutes by this resolution requests the Mineral Board to lease the Property for oil, gas and other minerals subject to conditions contained herein and accordance with applicable provisions of law.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the Board of Commissioners of the District in due, regular and legal session convened, that the President is hereby authorized to request the Mineral Board to lease certain mineral interests owned by the District and to execute all documents relative to same, including but not limited to any application required by the Mineral Board.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the Mineral Board be and it is hereby requested and authorized to seek public bids for oil, gas and mineral leases covering the Property
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that any such lease shall contain a No Surface Operations provision to read the same or substantially the same as the following:
“Except as otherwise expressly authorized in writing by Lessor, Lessee shall not use the surface of the lands covered by this Lease for any drilling or production purposes, including but not limited to drilling, completion, reworking, laying or operations of pipelines, or any other activity, it being the intention of the Lessor and Lessee that any activities relating to prospecting for, exploration or production of the minerals leased herein shall be conducted on property other than the lands covered by this Lease. Lessee, its successors or assigns, may produce oil, gas, and the minerals from the leased premises by drilling from a surface location on other lands. Notwithstanding any other provision of this lease to the contrary, where drilling or surface operations are allowed by Lessor, such operations shall be permitted only subject to Lessor’s prior written consent.”
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that any such lease shall contain a horizontal Pugh clause to read the same or substantially the same as the following:
“Notwithstanding anything to the contrary herein contained, at the end of the primary term or any extension thereof by operations, if the Commissioner of Conservation of the State of Louisiana establishes a drilling unit which includes a part of the land herein leased, or if the lessee shall pool or unitize any part of the land herein leased with other lands, the production of oil, gas and other minerals from any unit created by the Commissioner of Conservation or by voluntary pooling or unitization shall maintain this lease in full force and effect only as to such portions of the leased land embraced in any such pooled unit, and this lease shall expire as to that part of the land herein leased not included in any such pooled unit, and Lessee, its successors and assigns agree to relinquish by formal instrument any portion of the leased land not included in a unit created by the Commissioner of Conservation or by voluntary pooling or unitization while this lease is in effect.”
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that any such lease shall contain a vertical Pugh clause to read the same or substantially the same as the following:
“Upon the expiration of the primary term hereof or any extension thereof by operations, this lease shall automatically terminate and be of no further force or effect except as to all that part of the leased premises then included within the geographical boundaries of a producing unit duly established by governmental agency or authority having jurisdiction or by voluntary pooling or unitization, from the surface of the earth to a depth of 100 feet below the deepest depth from which any well commenced during the primary term hereof on the leased premises or on lands pooled therewith is completed and from which there is production in paying quantities, such determination to be made on a unit by unit basis. In the absence of units so established, this lease shall terminate except as to 40 acres around each producing oil well and 160 acres around each producing or shut-in gas well located on the leased premises, in as near the form of a square as is practicable, from the surface of the earth down to a depth of 100 feet below the deepest depth from which said well or wells are completed and from which there is production in paying quantities, such depth determination to be made on a well by well basis.”
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that any such lease shall contain a provision requiring minimum royalty payments to Lessor of not less than one-fourth (1/4) or twenty five (25%) percent.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that any such lease shall contain a provision requiring minimum bonus payments to Lessor of not less than Two Thousand and No/100 ($2,000.00) Dollars per acre.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that any such lease shall contain a maximum primary term not to exceed three (3) years.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that such lease shall contain a provision expressly stating that any lease granted by the District and accepted by Lessee shall be without warranty of title and without recourse against the District, whether expressed or implied, and further, that the District shall not be required to return any payments received or be otherwise responsible to Lessee therefor, including but not limited to any lease bonus.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that any error in any legal description of the Property that may be discovered by the Mineral Board or its staff during its review of the District’s application which are subsequently corrected by the District, provided such irregularities do not materially change the property being herein authorized for lease, shall not affect any authorization granted or conveyed herein and the Mineral Board is hereby authorized to advertise and subsequently lease the said Property as correctly described.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the President is authorized to apply to the Mineral Board to nominate the Property for leasing on such forms and containing such terms as are consistent with the terms and conditions of this resolution.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that if any provisions or items of this resolution or the application thereof is held invalid, such invalidity shall not affect other provisions, items or applications which can be given effect without the invalid provisions, items or applications, and to this end, the provisions of this resolution are hereby declared severable.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that all resolutions or parts thereof in conflict hereby are repealed.
No comments from the public.
Mr. Mark Long was seeking the Board’s approval to advertise for bids regarding the Red River Surfacing Project.
On motion by Moore, seconded by Montgomery and unanimously passed, the Board agreed to approve the advertisement of bids for the Red River Surfacing Project with a contingency of not exceeding $600,000.00. No comments from the public.
Mr. Mark Long requested authorization to purchase six new fleet trucks and equipment.
On motion by Montgomery, seconded by Moore, and unanimously passed, the Board approved the recommendation from the equipment committee to authorize the Bossier Levee District to purchase the following fleet trucks:
1 – Diesel 4 X 4Crew Cab F- 350 $44,709.00 2 – Diesel 4 X 4Crew Cab F- 250’s $40,287.00 x 2 = $80,574.00 1 – 4 X 4 Crew Cab F- 150 $30,793.00 2 – 4 X 4 Extended Cab F-150’s $29,255.00 x 2 = $58,510.00
Upon request from the Secretary, Tim Larkin addressed the Board and stated that a new slate of officers were needed to be nominated for election to the Board during the 2020 2022 term.
Tim Larkin, President stated that Commissioner Bill Alley, Commissioner Carl Bantle, and Commissioner Summa Stelly – the nominating committee, would meet and report back to our office with a new slate of officers nominated for election at the next Board meeting to be held on July 8th , 2020.
LEVEE AND DRAINAGE REPORT:
Red Chute Levee Improvement Project
- January 9, 2019 at 9:30 am. – opened bids on Red Chute Bayou Levee Improvement Project; with low bid of $5,145,791.49 from Testament Construction Services, LLC. - March 22, 2019 – contract signed with Testament Construction. - July 23, 2019 – Started Time Charges. - January 6, 2020 – Work approximately 50% complete. - June 1, 2020 – contractor resumed work activities.
Red Chute Levee Raise Project
- Mitigation analysis for levee raise is being conducted by Nixon Engineering and Dewberry Consultants. - October 31, 2019 – Nixon Engineering delivered mitigation report. - December 8, 2019 – Kurt Nixon and Jacob Lesue presented the board with mitigation study results. - March 11, 2020 – Kurt Nixon submitted a revised mitigation study report with recommendations for a levee raise and mitigation.
Red Chute Bayou Channel
- Recent high-water events have caused several slope failures on the bayou inside Barksdale AFB; work is needed to remove trees and stabilize slope failures near levee. - July 24, 2019 – Vicksburg Corps conducted a damage assessment of high-water damages on Red Chute Bayou; no determination as of November 11, 2019. - December 9, 2019 – Donald Walker, Chief of Vicksburg Corps Emergency Management called and advised that the Vicksburg Corps would be providing funding for approximately 10 bank caving sites along the levee. - December 10, 2019 – Captain Papia with the Vicksburg District made a site visit to assess the bank repair areas. - March 30, 2020 – received letter dated March 24, 2020 from the colonel of the Vicksburg District Army Corps denying our request for PL 84-99 funding for bank caving repairs.
Levee Inspection Compliance
- BLD has substantially completed an inspection and report of deficiencies on the Red River Levee including items listed on the USACE 2019 Levee Inspection Report. Our plan of action is to start removing all unwanted vegetation and other encroachments in areas where permission can be obtained from property owners. We will also start scheduling any needed repairs to drainage structures and other levee structures.
Red River Levee Certification
- Levee certification expires September 30, 2019. - May 8, 2018 – sent letter to Corps requesting their services in providing new levee certification.
Red River Corps Study
- March 29, 2017 – Received schedule of activities for Corps Sediment Study and Hydraulic Analysis for the Red River; estimated time for Hydraulic Model to be finalized is July 2019 and the estimated time for the Sediment Model to be finalized is December 2019. - August 28, 2019 – the Vicksburg Corps met with the Flood Technical Committee and briefed the Committee on the preliminary findings from the Study. The Study has produced a new 100-year flood profile which indicates that a portion of the levee north of Lock and Dam 5 has less than the minimum 3-foot free board; the new 100-year flood profile will also require new Base Flood Elevations (BFEs) be established. The Study is scheduled to be completed in March or April of 2020. Shona Gibson with FEMA Region 6 was also at the meeting and she said the Corps and FEMA will be working together to produce the new BFE’s; she also said that our levee system will not be re-certified due to the deficient levee height north of Lock and Dam 5. - December 6, 2019 – we received the new 1% WSE river profile grades for the Red River Levee from the Vicksburg Corp. - December 13, 2019 – we received plan and profile drawings with new 1% WSE river profile. - February 7, 2020 – we received word from Craig McRaney with the Vicksburg Corps that the levee can be raised above elevation of Lock and Dam 5 Road; Mr. McRaney also advised that the levee district should submit a request for a 408 permit to raise the levee in the areas with insufficient freeboard. - February 10, 2020 – a conference call was held with several members of the Vicksburg Corps; the purpose of the call was to seek guidance on how to expedite the permit for the levee raise and to request that the Corps provide assistance in obtaining the permit. Very little new information was obtained from the call; the Corps did say that they would research the Congressional Authorization for the levee to determine if any restrictions such as an additionally congressional authorization would be needed to raise the levee.
Red River Levee Surfacing
- Plans are being developed for placing crushed stone surfacing on approximately 7.9 miles of the levee beginning at the north end of the levee; levee access agreements must be obtained prior to completing scope of work; estimated cost $600,000.00.
Flat River Erosion Repairs
- Nixon Engineering – working on survey and preliminary design for erosion control work north of Sligo Road.
Red Chute Bayou Levee Culvert Rehab
- May 9, 2018 – approval given for contract to line remaining unlined CMP Culverts on Red Chute Bayou Levee in the amount of $138,317.52.
Bossier Levee District Facility Upgrades
- March 18, 2019 – M&M Builders started work on Bossier Levee District Facility Upgrades. - November 11, 2019 – New Shop Building 99% complete; paving and incidental work 95% complete. - December 9, 2019 – work is substantially complete except for repairs needed to correct ponding in concrete drive, security camera repairs, and waterline protection sleeves, and various other punch list items.
Bossier Levee District Facility Maintenance Repairs
- Plans are being made for several facility maintenance repairs for office building and shop; see attached list of proposed repairs.
- Hired contractor to install two 8ft access gates from Green Acres Blvd and one 8ft access gate from Meadow Creek Drive.
Levee and Drainage Crews
- Herbicide application on levee fence rows and drainage channels. - Inspecting levees, channels, and drainage structures; cleaning outfall pipes and flap gates. - Removing fallen trees from levees and channels. - Mowing levees and drainage channels. - Breaking up beaver dams. - Repairing gates on levee. - Trimming tree limbs on levee. - Removing debris buildup on bridges. - Servicing and repairing equipment.
- The following equipment is scheduled to be sold as surplus. 1) 2003 Case MX 110 with 5313 hours; Equipment # 205. 2) 2016 John Deere 6135E with 520 hours; Equipment # 380. 3) 2016 John Deere 6135E with 326 hours; Equipment # 381. 4) 2009 John Deere 7230 with 4975 hours; Equipment # 207. 5) 2009 John Deere 7230 with 4705 hours: Equipment # 208. 6) 2007 Ford F-450 with 103,566 miles; Equipment # 108. 7) 2000 John Deere Track Excavator with 4790 hours; Equipment # 203.
On motion by Moore, seconded by Stelly, and unanimously approved, the Board authorized the Secretary for the District to make payments for the months of April and May in the amount of $260,198.06 as set forth in the materials provided for the Board.
The June 10th, 2020 Bossier Levee District Board Meeting was adjourned at approximately 11:25 a.m.
__________________________ _____________________________ Tim Larkin, President Deanna S. Rabb, Secretary