The state of Minnesota could issue a new lease for the defaulted Mesabi Metallics Co.’s taconite project in Nashwauk under an amendment proposal the governor’s executive council will review Wednesday.
The lease amendments proposed by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) require Mesabi Metallics to first put $24.5 million into escrow accounts by Tuesday and to pay an additional $11.5 million in past-due rents and royalties owed to the state.
The funds would be overseen and used by the DNR, the state Department of Employment and Economic Development and Itasca County.
If approved by the state’s executive council, the newly amended lease will require Mesabi Metallics and its two partners — Essar Global and HBI Newco — to complete construction of several structures in Nashwauk by specific dates, a task that has proved difficult to date.
Mesabi Metallics “is pleased to announce it has agreed to the terms of