US Steel may temporarily idle plant in Southern Illinois

GRANITE CITY, Ill. (AP) – U.S. Steel Corp. says it is considering temporarily closing its plant in Granite City in southern Illinois.

The Pittsburgh-based steelmaker said in a Tuesday news release that as part of the possible consolidation it has sent 60-day layoff warnings to 2,000 employees.

The company blamed market conditions, including changing oil prices, fewer oil rigs, lower steel prices and what it called “unfairly traded imports.” The idling would be part of a consolidation of U.S. Steel’s North American flat-rolled operations.

Granite City Mayor Ed Hagnauer tells The St. Louis Post-Dispatch that U.S. Steel notified him on Tuesday. He said company officials said “it wasn’t a permanent closure.”

U.S. Steel in May canceled plans to temporarily close the mill.