SAINT PAUL, Minn. – Senator Grant Hauschild (DFL — Hermantown) said Monday that he had received confirmation from Cleveland-Cliffs that the mining company is beginning to contact miners about reopening their Babbitt and Silver Bay plants in early April.
“I’m encouraged that Cleveland-Cliffs is beginning the process to reopen their facilities in Babbitt and Silver Bay,” said Sen. Hauschild. “In recent months, I’ve held several meetings with Cleveland-Cliffs to discuss the importance of reopening these plants as soon as possible. These mines and jobs are critical to our regional economy. I heard from numerous miners who were impacted by this closure who said they wanted to get back to work. While we were able to get them a bridge in unemployment insurance benefits until April with my recent bill, my primary goal has always been to reopen these two plants. I’m glad to say that we’re one step closer to making that happen.”
Earlier this year, the Legislature passed a bill authored by Sen. Hauschild and Rep. Dave Lislegard (DFL — Aurora) which extended unemployment insurance benefits for miners who had been laid off. Sen. Hauschild said this bill went a long way in helping those workers, but he stayed focused on the ultimate goal of supporting Cleveland-Cliffs’ efforts to reopen their mining operations.