Top Headlines: U.S. Steel to restart Birmingham project, Hobby Lobby founder coming to Mobile

U.S. Steel, with nod to Trump, says it’s restarting Birmingham project
U.S. Steel Corp. will restart construction on an idled manufacturing facility in Alabama, and it gave some of the credit to President Donald Trump’s trade policies in an announcement Monday. Trump’s “strong trade actions” are partly responsible for the resumption of work on an advanced plant near Birmingham, the Pittsburgh-based company said in a statement. The administration’s tariffs have raised prices on imported steel and aluminum. – MarketWatch

Steel plant’s $215M rebirth will cost state $1.1M for incentives
U.S. Steel’s $215 million resumption of a delayed electric arc furnace steelmaking project in Fairfield got about $1.1 million in incentives from state officials. According to the Alabama Department of Commerce, the state’s incentives will be through Alabama Industrial Development Training (AIDT). It will provide recruitment, pre- and post-employment training support for the 150 new employees the company expects to hire. – AL.com

Hobby Lobby founder to give UM keynote March 21
Hobby Lobby founder David Green is the keynote speaker for the 14th annual University of Mobile Scholarship Banquet set for March 21. The signature event raises scholarship funds for University of Mobile students, so they can be challenged academically and renewed spiritually in a community where they are known. General admission tickets are $150 and may be purchased now at umobile.edu/banquet or through the University of Mobile Advancement Office at 251.442.2587 or advancement@umobile.edu. – Fox-10

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Lawmakers creep up on gas tax hike, perhaps 12 cents a gallon
Monday night, state Sen. Jim McClendon, R-Springville, and state Rep. Craig Lipscomb, R-Gadsden, addressed the St. Clair Farmer’s Federation in Ashville on their annual legislative day. The biggest issue facing the Legislature will be a proposed gas tax. “I am not involved in it,” McClendon said. “Everything that I know is second hand or third hand and that is a gas tax. There is a lot of talk about raising taxes on fuel to go towards infrastructure or really roads and bridges. We were told that it would be 12 cents per gallon.” – Alabama Political Reporter

Construction Partners reports Q1 earnings of $5.2M
Construction Partners Inc. (ROAD) on Monday reported fiscal first-quarter earnings of $5.2 million. On a per-share basis, the Dothan, Alabama-based company said it had net income of 10 cents. The results missed Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of three analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 15 cents per share. Construction Partners will be featured in the March issue of Business Alabama. – AP

Shelby says ‘agreement in principle’ may avoid shutdown
At 8:30 p.m. on Monday night, U.S. Republican Senator Richard Shelby, R-Alabama, told reporters that an “agreement in principle” has been reached to avoid another government shutdown. Senator Shelby is the Chairman of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee. In that role he was one of the four congressional negotiators working on border security funding. – Alabama Political Reporter

GM, Tesla may be working on pickup with Tesla powertrain
Elon Musk announced a while back that Tesla was working on a wicked electric pickup like nothing else we’ve seen. Just last month, Ford finally announced plans for an electric version of the F-150, king of the US auto market — by far —with nearly a million sales a year. But what of GM? A source says GM is indeed working on an electric pickup truck, based around a Tesla powertrain. – CleanTechnica

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