Gov. Dayton Sets Deadline for Essar Payment

Governor Mark Dayton has given Essar Steel an ultimatum, telling them they have until Wednesday to pay up to local construction companies or face immediate repayment of the state’s $66 million dollar loan. 

Essar Steel had made a commitment in October to the Governor to catch up on payments to contractors by October 31st.  Dayton’s office says that hasn’t happened. 

Governor Dayton spoke with Madhu Vuppuluri, President and CEO of Essar Steel Minnesota, on the phone last Wednesday. 

Dayton warned Vuppuluri that if the company pays it’s vendors by Wednesday, but fails to stay current on its payments to vendors in the future, that he will again demand immediate repayment of the state’s loan. 

Essar Steel representatives say they are committed to completing construction on their facility and begin taconite pellet production by the end of 2016. 

The $1.9 billion dollar project is expected to bring in more than 300 jobs to the Iron Range. 

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