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News Tribune staff, Duluth News Tribune, Published November 19 2012

Cliffs to idle 2 production lines in Iron Range, Silver Bay

Cliffs Natural Resources temporarily will idle two of its four Northshore Mining production lines, meaning 125 workers temporarily will lose their jobs, the company announced this morning.

Northshore’s mine in Babbitt and plant in Silver Bay will close for 2013 due to poor market conditions, according to Cliffs’ spokeswoman Sandy Karnowski.

Both sites may reopen if market conditions improve, Karnowski said.

Cliffs also will permanently shut down its Empire Mine in Michigan sometime during April or May, which will see 500 employees lose their jobs, Karnowski said.

The affected employees will receive supplemental unemployment pay and benefits based on the length of time they’ve worked for Cliffs, Karnowski said.