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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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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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Dayton, officials pledge support for Sartell in wake of paper mill closing

Gov. Mark Dayton and other government officials said Friday that they will pledge support for the city of Sartell after Verso Paper Corp. announced it was shutting down its fire-damaged paper mill for good. Dayton, who was in Sartell with U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and other lawmakers, vowed to use his clout to bring jobs back to the Verso site. More than 260 employees worked at the plant.

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Verso Paper has decided against reopening the Sartell mill that was damaged by an explosion and fire on Memorial Day. 259 people had worked at the plant. A company executive says it was a difficult decision, but the mill had not been competitive in recent years. Verso says it will work with local officials on finding a new use for the site.

Sartell tries to envision life after the paper mill

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.

Verso Paper collects $40M in advance insurance settlement

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.

Sen. Klobuchar visits damaged Verso Paper mill

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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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.

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Investigators say the fire at Sartell's Verso paper mill was caused by an overheated compressor. There was a severe loss of pressure in the water that normally cooled the equipment. The subsequent explosion and fire killed one worker and damaged the plant, which the company recently announced will not reopen.