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Damaged Sartell paper mill lays off most employees

Officials from Verso Paper told the St. Cloud Times the majority of its 260 workers have been given layoff notices following the deadly Memorial Day explosion and fire. The incident killed one person and injured four others. The central Minnesota plant is likely to remain idle for several months to complete necessary repairs.
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Officials from Verso Paper told the St. Cloud Times the majority of its 260 workers have been given layoff notices following the deadly Memorial Day explosion and fire. The incident killed one person and injured four others. The central Minnesota plant is likely to remain idle for several months to complete necessary repairs.

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Gov. Mark Dayton plans to call a special legislative session in late July or August to respond to flood damage in northeast Minnesota. The St. Cloud Times reports Dayton has indicated he's also interested in providing state aid for the Verso Paper mill following an explosion and fire on Memorial Day. One worker was killed, four others were injured and most of the 250 workers have been laid off from the Sartell plant.

4 investigations ongoing at Sartell mill

At least four investigations continue at the Verso Paper paper mill in Sartell in the wake of a Memorial Day explosion and fire at the plant. The probes are critical to answering questions about the mill’s future and efforts to put more than 250 people back to work.

Verso pays Sartell for paper mill fire expenses

Verso Paper Corp. on Monday paid the city of Sartell in full – about $398,000 – for its response to a Memorial Day fire that ultimately led to the permanent closing of the company's paper plant, the St. Cloud Times reports. There were 92 agencies from across the state that helped fight the blaze and 68 of those sought repayment.

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The owners changed over the years, but Sartell's paper mill has provided hundreds of jobs for more than a century. Those days are gone following Verso Paper's decision not to reopen the fire-damaged plant. Now Gov. Dayton will put together a task force to look at how to reuse the 37 acre site on the Mississippi River. Verso says it will share its list of potential buyers.

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U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar met with union workers and local management in Sartell on Saturday. The central Minnesota plant remains shut down after a Memorial Day explosion killed one worker, injured four others and put the future of more than 250 jobs in question. Democrat Amy Klobuchar told the St. Cloud Times she plans to have another conversation with Verso CEO Dave Paterson this week.

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Verso Paper Corp. says it has received about $40 million in insurance money after the explosion and fire that killed one worker and injured four other employees in Sartell, Minn., on Memorial Day, the St. Cloud Times reports. The company expects to collect an additional $44 million settlement.

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The State Fire Marshal’s Office has finished the on-site investigation of the Verso Paper mill. The deadly explosion and fire claimed the life of one worker and injured four others on Memorial Day. The St. Cloud Times reports the cause of the incident should be released in the coming weeks.