House poised to OK plan for Bootheel aluminum plant in special session

The Missouri House expects to send the Senate a bill Wednesday that would reopen a shuttered aluminum plant in the Bootheel region and build a new steel plant next door.

What the Senate will do remains to be seen, considering at least one Republican is using the special session to again harangue Gov. Eric Greitens, a fellow Republican, for his agenda-pushing nonprofit.

The bill would give the state’s Public Service Commission power to negotiate with Ameren Missouri, the St. Louis-based utility, for lower electrical rates for both plants.

Greitens, who called lawmakers back, said the measure will make way for about 500 jobs.

Rep. Don Rone, R-Portageville, filed the primary House bill. He said during one of the committee hearings that the project’s backers have almost everything they need.

Some Democrats voiced concerns that Ameren could raise utility rates on residential customers, similar to what Republican Sen. Doug Libla of Poplar Bluff has said.

Read more: St. Louis Public Radio

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