Bayou Corne residents upset over sinkhole response call for town hall meeting

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POSTED: Monday, September 17, 2012 - 8:36pm

UPDATED: Monday, September 17, 2012 - 8:49pm

Residents of Bayou Corne say they're tired of being kept in the dark. That's why they're going out on their own to get answers about the sinkhole.

They have called a town hall meeting for Thursday, at 6:30 p.m., at St. Joseph the Worker Church. They are inviting the public, as well as Texas Brine and the seven government offices aiding in the response.

When Hurricane Isaac hit a couple weeks ago, it turned the Assumption Parish sinkhole into a lesser priority.

As a result, frequent communications with residents of Bayou Corne stopped. Now, people are left to speculate about what's going on.

"Frustrations are mounting," said Warren Coupel. "They're not getting the answers that they need to get."

Information has been hard to come by, but evacuees say they know a lot has changed at the site in the last couple weeks.

"The seismic activity has increased, more gas bubbling spots have popped up," said John Achee Jr. "DNR has ordered all seven companies on the dome to investigate, flare, and vent the aquifer."

Three weeks have passed since the last public meeting, and according to Achee, another three weeks would have passed before the next one.

"We don't feel like that's acceptable," said Coupel. :"These people need answers, and they need to be supported by our officials."

"It would ease concerns," Achee said, "from the standpoint of people would feel like they're being kept informed."

They say Texas Brine has already agreed to show up. Now they hope parish and state representatives will attend, as well. They think two hours is not too much to ask.

"It's about the residents of Bayou Corne wanting updated information, and there's no reason that these guys shouldn't show up," said Achee.

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