Group encouraging support for Mesabi Metallics makes trip to St. Paul

Group lobbies at the capital for Mesabi Metallics

A look at the efforts to support Mesabi Metallics, as a group headed to St. Paul on Wednesday.

Build Mesabi. Build Itasca! folks boarded a bus and headed to St. Paul on Wednesday.

There, they met with lawmakers and the Governor’s office about the project in Nashwauk.

The goal is to encourage cooperation to get this mine and taconite plant built.

Barb Kalmi, Vice-Chair of the Nashwauk-Keewatin school board, is very involved with Build Mesabi. Build Itasca! “We meet twice a month with Mesabi Metallics to get an update on the project. And we also hold town hall meeting to inform the public and neighbors,” she told us.

Her husband worked at Butler Taconite, which closed at the same site in 1985. As for the disappointment leading up to where the project is now, she said it does not compare to the pain of what happened when the mine closed.

Jason Quiggin, President of the Iron Range Building and Construction Trades, added, “There’s a lot more direct relationship that exists this time. Ravi Ruia is here at least one time a month. And he meets with us to give us updates on the project.”

Organizers believe that there is enough ore for both Mesabi and Cleveland-Cliffs. Cliffs has control of the state mineral leases at the site.

Mesabi plans on finishing the $2.6 billion dollar project within the next three years.