Keokuk steel foundry to reopen with aid of state incentives

July 22, 2016 GMT

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An idled steel castings foundry in Keokuk may come to life again and create 200 jobs with approval of state incentives.

The Iowa Economic Development Board on Friday approved $1 million in loans and additional tax breaks to reopen the former Keokuk Steel Manufacturing Co.

The plant was closed in March when its owner India-based Sanmar Group moved production to Mexico.

A new company called Keokuk Mills plans to reopen it to make steel products for manufacturers of agricultural, construction and utilities equipment.

The new company has budgeted $6 million to get the plant running again and plans to pay $14.39 an hour.

At its peak the plant had 550 employees but when it closed permanently employment was around 220.