Aerial image February 20, 2013 (Source: Assumption Parish OEP)
BAYOU CORNE, LA (WAFB) -
It took seven months, but Governor Bobby Jindal publicly met with residents
who are affected by the giant sinkhole in Bayou Corne. Tuesday was the first
time Governor Jindal met with the residents since the sinkhole forced more than
300 people to evacuate their homes.
"I've got my life's savings tied up here. Let's keep it," said
resident Dennis Landry.
Jindal talked with state and local officials and then took questions from
residents in a discussion closed to the media. Resident Bucky Mistretta was
satisfied with Jindal's message.
"I was just extremely glad to see him come here and finally address the
people in our community so that we all know what exactly is going on and how
involved he and his administration is," said Mistretta.
In the press conference that followed, Jindal outlined a plan calling for
more venting wells and a mandate for Texas Brine to make an offer to residents
interested in a buyout option. The governor also received some ribbing from
Assumption Parish Sheriff Mike Waguespack.
"The governor is going to stay with us. He was a little late getting
here and I promise if he ever does that again we're going to make him swim that
sinkhole," said Waguespack.
"Our commitment from that state is we will hold Texas Brine
accountable. We're going to make sure they're responsible for cleaning up mess
they have caused. We are going to do everything we can to make sure that they
truly make this right," said Governor Jindal.
That is a promise the folks in Bayou Corne plan to hold him to.
"If he sticks to his word, he's going to make it right for
everybody," said resident Henry Welch.
Jindal's visit comes 10 days after California based environmentalist Erin
Brockovich visited residents at Bayou Corne with California based attorney Tom
Girardi. Girardi has offered his legal services to any resident who decides to
take further action against Texas Brine and all parties responsible for their
troubles over the past seven months. Brockovich says litigation, if things come
to that, could take months or even years to resolve. She says her role, as it
has been for nearly two decades in dozens of cases like this one, would be to
keep the community united.
On March 13, Texas-Brine, a Houston based company which owns the salt dome
that caused the sinkhole, announced they would begin assessing the homes and
offering buyouts and settlements for the 350 people evacuated.
Bubbles were spotted in Bayou Corne and Grand Bayou in June 2012. Two months
later, the ground opened up and left a nine acre sinkhole. Residents were
evacuated and have been for the past seven months. Most affected residents
began receiving weekly checks from Texas-Brine in the amount of $875 per week. The
sinkhole is now about 12 acres in size.
Tuesday, February 25 2014 8:00 AM EST2014-02-25 13:00:21 GMT
Officials said a new bubbling site has been discovered near the massive sinkhole in south Louisiana. According to the Assumption Parish Police Jury, bubbles were spotted on Grand Bayou, which runs alongMore >>
Officials said a new bubbling site has been discovered near the massive sinkhole in south Louisiana. The bubbles were seen on Grand Bayou. More >>
Tuesday, February 18 2014 12:21 PM EST2014-02-18 17:21:55 GMT
Officials will address concerns at the site of the massive sinkhole in south Louisiana. Texas Brine will hold a public meeting in Assumption Parish next week. It is scheduled to take place at the TexasMore >>
Officials will address concerns at the site of the massive sinkhole in south Louisiana. Texas Brine will hold a public meeting in Assumption Parish Tuesday.More >>
Tuesday, January 14 2014 6:51 AM EST2014-01-14 11:51:44 GMT
More information will be given Tuesday about current efforts to contain the giant sinkhole in south Louisiana. Texas Brine and Assumption Parish officials will hold an informational meeting at 5:30 p.m. toMore >>
More information will be given Tuesday about current efforts to contain the giant sinkhole in south Louisiana. The focus will be on those vent wells siphoning gas from beneath the ground.More >>
Wednesday, January 8 2014 6:28 PM EST2014-01-08 23:28:12 GMT
The company that accepted responsibility for the giant Louisiana sinkhole in Bayou Corne claims an insurance company has put them in a hole.Texas Brine filed a complaint with the state insurance departmentMore >>
The company that accepted responsibility for the giant Louisiana sinkhole in Bayou Corne claims an insurance company has put them in a hole.More >>
Tuesday, December 24 2013 8:41 AM EST2013-12-24 13:41:01 GMT
Work is once again on hold at the giant Louisiana sinkhole after workers found another crack in the levee. The new cracks are in the same spot where previous cracks were repaired in the lowest part ofMore >>
Work is once again on hold at the giant Louisiana sinkhole after workers found another crack in the levee.More >>
The Assumption Parish, LA sinkhole continues to grow. The ground opened up on August 3, 2012 and residents were evacuated from their homes. Click here to see the photos from August 2012 until now.More >>
The Assumption Parish, LA sinkhole continues to grow. The ground opened up on August 3, 2012 and residents were evacuated from their homes. The sinkhole, or slurry, is consuming land and trees. Many images are from the Assumption Parish Police Jury. Click here to see the photos from August until now. More >>
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