September 23, 2008

Council Votes on SunCoke Tax Tonight

By Ed Richter Staff Writer

MIDDLETOWN -- Now that the zoning has been approved for the SunCoke Energy project, Middletown City Council tonight, Sept. 16, will consider an emergency ordinance for an enterprise zone tax abatement for the proposed $340 million to $355 million heat recovery coke and electric co-generation plant.

If approved, it would allow the city to enter a 10-year, 50 percent enterprise zone tax abatement for the Middletown Coke Co., a subsidiary of Sun-Coke Energy of Knoxville, Tenn. The 100-oven coke battery, to be located north of the MADE Industrial Park between Ohio 4 and Yankee Road, will be able to produce annually about 550,000 tons of coke and 50 megawatts of electricity that would be sold exclusively for 20 years to AK Steel Corp.'s Middletown Works.

The coke plant would hire 75, full-time permanent employees with an estimated $5 million annual payroll. In addition, the construction payroll would generate an estimated $30 million, according to the city staff report.

The project, which has generated opposition from nearby Monroe residents, is awaiting final approval from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency on its air pollution permits.

Middletown City Council will meet at 5:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers on the lower level of the Middletown City Building, One Donham Plaza.

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