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Company to pad fund to aid residents near sinkhole

A Houston-based brine company has agreed to make a "significant contribution" to a fund for residents ordered to evacuate their homes after a sinkhole formed in Assumption Parish that may be connected to one of the company's salt caverns.

The Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness said Saturday that Texas Brine Co. LLC's original permit for the cavern requires the operator to provide assistance to residents in areas deemed to be at immediate potential risk. The permit requirement arises in the event of a sinkhole and evacuation.

Assumption Parish officials ordered an evacuation Aug. 3, the day the sinkhole was found. People in the Bayou Corne and Grand Bayou areas had reported bubbles and earth tremors for more than two months.

The evacuation order affects about 150 homes.

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