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Schumer urges Alcoa to push forward with modernization

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MASSENA - Sen. Charles E. Schumer urged Alcoa Thursday to push forward with a modernization of its Massena operations.

Mr. Schumer said he had a personal phone call with Alcoa CEO Klaus Kleinfeld Thursday to advocate for the company’s proposed project. Alcoa officials had stated in the past that they needed a clearer idea of how much money it would cost to clean up the Grasse River before they could commit to the modernization, which could ensure the company’s presence in Massena for decades to come.

Last week, the Environmental Protection Agency released its proposed $243 million cleanup option for the river, which Alcoa will fund. The EPA will gather public comment on the proposal through Nov. 15, then will finalize the plan.

“Given that the Environmental Protection Agency has done their due diligence and released a fair and timely cleanup plan for the Grasse River, the ball is on Alcoa’s court to expand their operations and create jobs in the North Country,” Mr. Schumer said in a statement. “In my phone conversation with Alcoa’s CEO Klaus, I urged that he make a steadfast and final commitment to the company’s future in St. Lawrence County and move forward with all due speed towards a $600 million investment and upgrades at their plant in Massena. The release of the Grasse River cleanup plan clears the last major hurdle towards Alcoa’s expansion, and now Alcoa must make their expansion plans loud and clear to the people and workers of St. Lawrence County.”

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