UPDATE: Arkansas panel approves steel mill air permit
NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - An environmental regulatory panel has issued an air quality permit for a planned $1.2 billion steel mill in northeast Arkansas. The Pollution Control and Ecology Commission approved the permit Friday for Big River Steel. Company CEO John Correnti says the commission's action opens the way for the mill to be financed and for construction to start. Correnti says the site will have a peak of 2,000 construction workers over the two years it will take to build the site. The mill itself will have 545 employees. A competing steel company, Nucor, opposed the permit. An administrative law judge earlier rejected Nucor's challenge, but the permit still required commission approval. Groundbreaking is tentatively set for late June.Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.