Peabody emerging from bankruptcy |

Peabody emerging from bankruptcy

— Peabody Energy, owner of the Twentymile Mine in Routt County, is on course to emerge from bankruptcy.

Last week, Peabody announced it had filed its plan of reorganization.

“I think it’s a great thing,” Routt County Commissioner Doug Monger said. “We look forward to helping them out in the future with our partnership.”

Peabody has set a goal of coming out of bankruptcy around the beginning of the second quarter in 2017.

Monger said he believed the bankruptcy did not have an impact on local operations, and he was thankful the high-paying jobs at the coal mine are staying put.

“All three commissioners are very supportive of the $80,000, $90,000 jobs and trying to keep them in our system here,” Monger said.

The bankruptcy did create one major challenge locally. There was a delay in the payment of nearly $1.8 million in property taxes. The South Routt School District had to take out a loan from the state until Peabody paid its taxes.

According to a news release, the proposed bankruptcy emergence plan provides for a new, sustainable capital structure that significantly reduces the pre-filing debt levels by more than $5 billion, lowers fixed charges and recapitalizes the company through a backstopped rights offering of $750 million, a private placement of mandatorily convertible preferred stock of $750 million and the issuance of new common stock to satisfy certain creditor claims.

The plan also anticipates that Peabody will emerge with substantial liquidity to satisfy near- and long-term needs.

“Eight months ago, we set out on a path to strengthen the balance sheet and position the company for long-term success amid historically challenged coal industry fundamentals,” Peabody Energy President and CEO Glenn Kellow said in a news release. “We’re pleased to reach this important step as we move to the next phase of Peabody’s Chapter 11 process.”

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland

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