Beulah families organizing opposition to a potential rock quarry

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BEULAH, Ala. (WRBL) – Several families in the Beulah community share their concerns, saying Creekwood Resources is in the exploratory stages of locating a rock quarry in an area of Lee Rod 177 and Highway 29.

You may remember back in March the same company backed off locating a quarry near Opelika in the Lee County community after city leaders, nearby families and organizations put up a fight.

Now, it appears Creekwood Resources is eying land in the Beulah part of Lee County, much to the dismay of Summer Lewis and her family who have owned property off of Highway 29 since 1935. Lewis owns 15 acres of the family’s homestead and is in a lease to hold an agreement to buy back 27 more. Lewis says Creekwood Resources is trying to purchase the land – and secure additional nearby property – to build a quarry.

“We are concerned about our property and them coming in and taking our property or a portion of our property. A quarry would surround us for the rest of our time. I mean, this is our retirement here, ” shared Lewis.

The family worries about infrastructure damage to Highway 29 and other roadways from large trucks carrying rock. They also worry about noise, air, and water pollution at nearby waterways, including Halawakee Creek, which flows into Lake Harding.

“I fish on Lake Harding and I the creek runs into the lake. I worry about that community for the Lake Harding area. Also, I worry about our pond here. If they drill down deep and hit a spring, we lose our pond, like Spring Villa, and everybody knows what happened there,” shared Jerome Owsley.

Daniele Ritch, who owns land nearby the quarry, and other families are starting a grassroots effort to stop the potential of a quarry locating near their farms and land. Friday night, concerned residents are invited to a community meeting outside Cusetta Event Center. The group also has a Facebook Page called “Protect Beulah Stop The Quarry.”

https://www.facebook.com/protectbeulah/
Concerned residents have started a Facebook Page called “Protect Beulah Stop The Quarry.”

“We are having a community meeting at the Cusetta Event Center tonight at 5:30 central time tonight to get people aware of what is going on so we can also meet with the County Commission at their meeting on Monday,” shared Ritch.

District 38 State Representative Debbie Wood is aware of citizen concerns and says her office is engaged in helping.

“My phone continues to ring, and the same questioned is being asked, ” How do we stop the quarry from coming to our community?” People want to live peaceably and desire that their opposition is heard. I will stand with the residents and work jointly with the Lee County Commission on a solution to this issue,” shared Rep. Wood.

Late Friday afternoon, News 3 heard back from Elizabeth Revell, Creekwood Resources’ Community Relations Representative.

“We understand there are concerns. We are worried that there is irresponsible, inaccurate, and false information circulating that is not based on facts. Our goal is to provide the community with the facts and we are willing to meet with anyone who is open to hearing them. Creekwood Resources is a company that cares and aspires to become a good corporate citizen for many years to come,” shared Revell.

Meanwhile, Lewis and Ritch are urging citizens to contact their Lee County Commissioners and attend Monday’s County Commission meeting and voice their concerns. The meeting is Monday, August 10, at 5:00.

News 3 will keep you updated.

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