The Cleveland Plain Dealer is reporting that a Russian steel firm is thinking about building a mill on the Ohio River.
Haverhill, Ohio- The construction of two large coke production plants in southern Ohio has enticed a Russian steel maker to consider locating a mill in Ohio.
Magnitogorsk Iron and Steel Works, or MMK, is considering building a plant in Ohio to supply the automotive industry. Scioto County officials say the firm is looking at sites near two coke plants in Haverhill along the Ohio River.
SunCoke Energy of Knoxville, Tenn., opened the first Haverhill coke plant in 2005 and is building a second $230 million plant. Each plant will produce about 550,000 tons of coke, made from coal, a year.
Steel! Cars! Heavy industry! Awesome. I am glad to see that the free market is reviving interest in American... uh-oh... wait a minute...
Lt. Gov. Lee Fisher and Steve Schoeny, state economic development director, flew to Russia this month to meet with MMK officials. The cost of airfare alone for the two officials and two state troopers serving on security detail was $42,000.
Fisher said the expense was appropriate and necessary given the nature of the potential deal.
"Because we're competing with other states, the only way to get to the front of the line was to go there," he said.
Balls. What's a pro-industry libertarian to do?
I have no idea what the officials discussed. But I bet I can guess.
One wonders. The coke plant is already in Haverhill. (Who knows how that happened?) And the car plants are nearby. Factors which would seem to make it a good place for a mill. I wonder what else they'll do to sweeten the deal.
Couldn't they at least ask the company to send people to Ohio for the meeting?