2 Stories by Lonny Cavalier at the Bayou Journal


July 17 –

Texas Brine Slices 25% off Parish Invoices

 (Houston Based Company Refuses to Pay OEP Director)

By Staff Writer
Lonny Cavalier

In what has long been a public relations nightmare by Texas Brine, its latest moves are doing nothing to repair its broken image.
 Assumption Parish Police jurors announced at the regular scheduled Wednesday night meeting that the Houston based company without consulting anyone, cut the latest invoice by 25%. The company prior to the most recent payments, had only paid through the end of January’s invoices and the parish costs continue to mount.
 Additionally, Texas Brine is refusing to pay straight time costs for OEP director John Boudreaux, who has been at Bayou Corne 7 days a week, generally 12 hours per day.
 Police Jury President Marty Triche said Texas Brine’s reasoning is that the parish would have to pay him anyway.
 The discussion took center stage at Wednesday’s meeting, as jurors try to grapple with ongoing costs due to the sinkhole and how to deal with Boudreauxs other assignments as Permit Officer and 911 Director.
 Triche said he is concerned because the Texas Brine debacle could go on for years. Jurors will meet next week with OEP personnel to review the situation and make some changes internally to deal with the problems the best way possible.
 In other matters, jurors approved the lowest bid by Magnolia Construction for the Bertrandville sewer project in the amount of $1,774,716.50.
 The project was budgeted for $1,826,000. Jurors also approved the low bid of $5500.00 by Rene’s Trucking to clear the property for the sewer plant and construct a lay down yard.
 In related jury issues, jurors

  •  *Re-appointed Ricky Landry and Nelson Guillot as board members of Lower Texas Drainage District No. 15.
  •  *Approved a catch basin off of LA 402 at a cost of $200.00.
  •  *Approved resolutions for the Bertrandville, Peterville, and Marais/Louis treatment plants and improvements and authorized the president to sign necessary documents.
  •  *Heard an update from Mrs. Beryl Gomez on FEMA appeals.
  •  *Granted preliminary approval for the subdivision of property by Sarah Daigle on Highway 401.
  •  *Approved substantial completion for the 2012 Road Improvement Program but held a retainage of 10% for warranty work.
  •  *Approved a request by Juror Myron Matherne to send a letter to the property owners at 4318 Highway 70 in Ward 9, to cease and desist the operation of a scrap material yard at the location. Matherne provided photographs of the alleged ongoing work.

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 Texas Brine’s damages expanding

By Staff Writer
 Lonny Cavalier

When the August 3, 2012 sinkhole formed, people figured that for the most part, Bayou Corne and Grand Bayou residents would feel the greatest consequences and that thought was correct.

 As the 1 year anniversary approaches, the effects of Texas Brine’s disaster is reaching well beyond the boundaries of the local community and when all is said and done, if it ever is, there will never be enough money to go around.

 Directly associated with the sinkhole are expenses related to buyouts, evacuations, public safety and environmental costs.

 While Texas Brine has consistently ignored the issue of testing for gas in the border communities of Pierre part, Paincourtville, Belle Rose, etc., it now appears that those areas are beginning to feel the pain of Texas Brine’s misdeeds.

 While there have been some statements made that testing was done, no one has ever provided any documentation of any such testing, but those property owners are fixing to pay a heavy price.

 A recent Bayou Corne evacuee attempted to finance a home loan for a Paincourtville property, bus was denied. Why? Because they were too close to a sinkhole.

 A Pierre Part businessman recently attempted to refinance a debt on personal property which is also tied to lines of credit for his business. The feat had been accomplished many times in the past, but Texas Brine has just put an end to that.

 The bank arranging for the refinancing through a secondary lender issued a letter denying the loan application because the property was 4- 4½ miles from a sinkhole.

 The inability of business and/or homeowners to refinance existing debt will lead to an extreme increase in interest rates, particularly if you have a floating interest rate or a loan tied to lines of credit.

 Also, some outlying resident’s are receiving inquiries from insurance companies concerning the sinkhole. It is probably a safe bet that your homeowners insurance premiums are about to rise solely because of the sinkhole.

 As a result of those circumstances, Texas Brine can expect additional civil claims as homeowners have no option but to pursue legal avenues to attempt to recover their losses.

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– emphasis added

The Bayou Journal