Sen. Hauschild: Cleveland-Cliffs to restart idled mining operations

Cleveland Cliffs Northshore Mine
Cleveland Cliffs Northshore Mine(Northern News Now)
Published: Feb. 20, 2023 at 12:45 PM CST
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ST. PAUL, MN. (Northern News Now) - After almost of year of being idle, Cleveland-Cliffs is said to be contacting miners about reopening their Northshore Mining operations.

Senator Grant Hauschild (DFL - Hermantown) said Monday he received confirmation from Cleveland-Cliffs of their plans to reopen facilities in Babbitt and Silver Bay in early April.

Cleveland-Cliffs idled its Northshore Mining operations in the Babbitt mine and the Silver Bay pellet plant in May 2022.

Due to this, over 400 workers were impacted by layoffs.

In July 2022, the company announced the idle, which was supposed to end that fall, would be extended.

Many of the unemployed workers exhausted their regular benefits by November because of the idle extension, leaving many without financial help.

Earlier this year, the Legislature passed a bill authored by Senator Hauschild and Representative Dave Lislegard (DFL - Aurora) that extended unemployment insurance benefits for miners who had been laid off.

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.

“I’m encouraged that Cleveland-Cliffs is beginning the process to reopen their facilities in Babbitt and Silver Bay,” said Senator 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...I’m glad to say that we’re one step closer to making that happen.”

Northern News Now has reached out to Cleveland-Cliffs for confirmation but has not received a statement at this time.