NEW YORK Big River Steel
LLCs proposed steel mill in Arkansas took one step
forward Monday after the states House passed a bill that
would offer key incentives to the $1.1-billion project.
The overwhelming 78-to-17 vote
for the bill, which would offer $125 million in bonds for
funding to the company, underscores the widespread political
support the project has in the state.
Arkansas Gov. Mike Beebe
"absolutely" backs the project and would sign the bill into
law, a spokesman for the governors office said.
The Arkansas Senate has already
passed its version of the bill (
amm.com, April 3), but the Senate and House
versions must be reconciled before they reach the
Big River Steel, led by industry
veteran John D. Correnti, plans a 1.7-million-ton-per-year mill
in Osceola, Ark., which is slated to become operational by
2016. Construction of the mill is contingent on the state
issuing general-obligation bonds.
Charlotte, N.C.-based competitor Nucor Corp. has pushed back
against the project (
amm.com, March 18), citing overcapacity in the
steel market, among other concerns.