Governor, Lawmakers Meet With Peabody Executives

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Gov. Ernie Fletcher said Wednesday that he and lawmakers received a commitment from Peabody Energy that the St. Louis company would recommend building a $3 billion coal gasification plant in Kentucky if the state comes through with financial incentives.

Fletcher made the statement after coming out of a meeting with Peabody executives. He called the meeting "very productive."

The governor said Peabody executives promised to recommend to their investors that the plant be built in Kentucky if lawmakers approve tax breaks worth some $300 million.

Peabody is considering building the plant near an existing Peabody mine in Illinois, Indiana or Kentucky. Feasibility studies are under way to determine the preferred location.

Fletcher wants lawmakers to return to the Capitol next Monday for a special legislative session to approve the incentive package. Lawmakers haven't yet agreed to do so.

"I'm sure we can get something done if we lay politics aside," Fletcher said Wednesday.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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