Click the tabs below to view the answers to each question.
Is the lake open to the public?
No, not at this time. The lake is still an active contruction site. Please check back for updates.
Can I get an update on the project?
Bid documents are currently being updated. In December, the following schedule was announced:
- February 28, 2012: Bid Documents for Phase 1 will be available
- March 15, 2012: Mandatory Pre-Bid Conference will be held at Cullman City Hall Auditorium at 9:00 a.m. CST. The pre-bid conference will begin in the auditorium and then proceed tothe project site.
- March 27, 2012: Receive and open bids.
- If there are any changes, notifications will be sent out.
How can I receive information on construction activities?
A list is being compiled of all businesses interested in participating in this project. On the duckriver.org website, please go to the "Moving Forward" tab, then choose "Construction". There is a link to a Contractor Information Form here, click on link, print, fill out, and return the form as directed.
What is the Cost of the Duck River Project?
How much water will the Duck River Project provide?
32 million gallons per day (MGD)
How long will it take to complete and provide water?
Was treatment capacity an issue during the recent drought?
No. Use was 14 MGD and treatment capacity remained at 24 MGD. Supply was exhausted, not treatment ability. Download a PDF of a chart showing Daily Production vs. Maximum Capacity
What about Disinfection By Products (DBPs)?
The Lake Catoma Plant is well below the safe standards. The distribution systems are responsible for maintaining that quality as they deliver to their customers. Learn more about the Water Quality
Does every system, including the city, pay the same price for water?
Yes. It is determined by an annual audit based on the cost of production and debt service. Current wholesale rate is $2.01 per 1,000 gallons.
Will a water authority or water district be created for Duck River?
Yes. It would be created with the guidance of the local Legislative delegation and the board would include representatives of all of the systems and the agricultural community.
Will new farms be allowed?
Yes, as long as they meet the existing ADEM buffers. We want new farms and operations. Cullman County's agriculture production is one of the justifications for the new reservoir. Everyone must have a NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) Permit for any construction work that exceeds 1 acre in size. Cullman County Soil & Water Conservation District can help with these.
Poultry houses new
- 165 ft from property line
- 330 ft from unowned home
- 100 ft from stream of water
- 165 ft from property line
- 165 ft from unowned home
- 100 ft from stream of water
Will I be able to expand a poultry operation?
Yes, as long as the ADEM buffer requirements are followed. So far, producers have been able to meet the buffer requirements and expand.
Can I rebuild a farm if disaster hits?
Yes, as long as it is no closer to the property line and other buffers ADEM requires.
Will all farms be inspected in the area?
The AFO/CAFO rules state that any farm can be inspected at any time and is a national rule. The regulations state that all CAFOs will be inspected annually. This can be done by ADEM or ADAI (Alabama Department of Agriculture and Industries). Each CAFO must get a QCP (Qualified Credentialed Person) to inspect the business each year. The Soil and Water District, along with the ADAI, have made arrangements to reimburse the producer the cost of these inspections from the QCP, normally $200.00 per year.
Can I still spread poultry litter?
Yes. AFO/CAFO regulations require a soil test based on Phosphorous. The litter must be applied on actively growing grasses, or in row crop situations, within 30 days of planting. Cullman County Soil & Water Conservation District (CCSWCD) can help develop a plan to determine the rate of uptake for the plant. Most of the time, CCSWCD is still able to determine the Nitrogen rate of application by using buffers or rotational grazing.
Will my cattle have to be fenced out of streams?
No. This is not the law, but is highly recommended to help with water quality issues. ADEM can require this if they show water quality impairment due to excess numbers of cattle in a stream. ADEM has the authority to prohibit anything that they think is a water quality violation, anything from gas/oil, poultry, cattle, urban - anything. Rotational grazing systems are a good way to help with this.
Will the 9.9 boat motor limit be in effect on the lake?
Yes. This is to protect the water quality in the lake. Some reservoirs across the country will only allow electric motors. Recreation will be promoted on this lake as a condition of the 404 Permit.
Will development be allowed around the lake?
The 100 foot fenced buffer around the lake will be managed for natural areas. No development inside the buffer area will be allowed. The authority that owns the reservoir will also own the buffer. The surrounding land can be used for whatever purpose the landowner wants. Septic systems must comply with Health Department regulations regarding disposal areas and are not affected by Duck River.
Why is the lake buffer being fenced?
It will be fenced to help identify the edge of the buffer zone and to mark property lines. Access points will be made available to allow public access to the lake. This fence will be placed along the 100 ft buffer zone, not outside on private property. The reservoir owner will be responsible for upkeep of the fence.
Is the private landowner expected to pay for any expenses relative to selling their property?
Can the City of Cullman annex property along the pipeline?
No. The pipeline will be in an easement that current property owners will continue to own. The City of Cullman cannot annex around the lake or pipeline.
Has any expenses related to the Duck River Project been passed along to the water customers?
No. The $5 millon ARC Grant (1993) and the City of Cullman Utility Board has covered all expenses to date.
Will Any Roads be Closed by the Duck River Reservoir?
Roads affected by this project:
- County Road 1651 over Henderson Branch: this was originally scheduled to be closed. However, after further evaluations, it was determined that this part of the road could be raised which will allow it to remain open.
- County Road 1647: the bridge on this road washed out last year due to heavy rains. The property owner asked the County Commission to close this bridge / road and deed property back to the original owner. The County Commission approved this request and this road is has been closed.
- County Road 1651 over Duck River (Tanner Bridge): this road will end with cul de sacs on both sides of the reservoir. It has been discussed that this may be a boat launch once the project is completed.
- County Road 1663 (travelling South from Antioch Church and ends at CR 1651): this road will end in a cul-de-sac near Tanner Bridge.