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Mar 13, 2013 5:37 PM by AP

Jindal says Texas Brine to begin sinkhole buyouts

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Gov. Bobby Jindal says Texas Brine has agreed to offer buyouts to residents evacuated because of a nine-acre sinkhole in Assumption Parish.

Jindal announced the development Wednesday after sitting down with company officials in a closed-door meeting.

Scientists say the sinkhole formed after the collapse of an underground salt cavern operated by Houston-based Texas Brine, which extracted brine and piped it to nearby petrochemical facilities.

About 350 people living in the area have been under an evacuation order and many of them displaced since early August, with no immediate end in sight.

Jindal says Texas Brine plans to send out appraisers beginning Monday to determine residents' interest in the voluntary buyouts and to assess the value of homes in the area.

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