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Alpha files reorganization plan.

Alpha Natural Resources, currently working through a Chapter 11 bankruptcy case, has submitted its plan for reorganization with a focus on preserving jobs as well as its environmental obligations. The company entered its plan and disclosure statement to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on March 8. They outlined the sale of assets, its plan for creditor claim resolutions, and a projection of its emergence as a streamlined and sustainable reorganized producer post-bankruptcy.

"By selling certain assets as an ongoing concern and restructuring the company's remaining assets into a reorganized Alpha, the company is able to provide maximum recovery to its creditors, while preserving jobs and putting itself in the best position to meet its reclamation obligations," officials said.

Alpha is projecting that its case proceedings will conclude by June 30; it first filed for Chapter 11 last August. The company entered a request on February 8 for approval of a sale of its core assets in a bidding process, which includes a stalking horse bid. Included in that bid are the Alpha Coal West complexes; the McClure, Nicholas and Toms Creek mine complexes in West Virginia and Virginia; all operations and reserves in Pennsylvania, including the Cumberland and Emerald mines; the Freeport, Sewickley and Foundation coal reserves and assets; its natural gas business interest owned by Pennsylvania Land Resources Holding Co.; the company's interest in Dominion Terminal Associates in Newport News, Virginia; and other assets and working capital. If no higher offer is received, Alpha plans to sell its core businesses to that bidder, which is made up of the company's first lien lenders.

"Through the plan of reorganization, all remaining unsold assets will become part of reorganized Alpha, a smaller, sustainable company, structured to focus primarily on fulfilling all of the company's environmental reclamation obligations on an ongoing basis," the company said, adding that the plan will allow it to be sufficiently funded to support its operational activities.

According to company chairman and CEO Kevin Crutchfield, Alpha expects to continue operating its remaining mines, adjusting for market conditions.

"By leveraging core assets for sustainable productivity, while addressing the stewardship obligations of our remaining properties, these filings represent an important step in our effort to effectively restructure the company and emerge from Chapter 11 better positioned to meet new market realities," he said.

In related news, the company announced another round of layoffs at four mines and one processing plant in West Virginia, all of which are slated to be idled. An Alpha spokesperson said the 230 individuals who received Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act notices on February 5 will be officially laid off on April 5, or within two weeks of that date.

The impacted locations are Jackson Bridge No. 1 in Braxton County; Mine No. 4 in Braxton County; Sumter in Braxton and Webster counties; and the Seven Pines surface operation in Webster County; also included is the Erbacon processing plant.

The locations are operated by Brooks Run Mining and Maxxim Shared Services, respectively.

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Title Annotation:NEWS; Alpha Natural Resources
Publication:Coal Age (1996)
Date:Mar 1, 2016
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