Federal loan would support expansion at Alcoa plant

ALCOA, Tenn. (AP) – A statement from the U.S. Energy Department says it has given a “conditional commitment” for a $259 million loan to the Alcoa plant in East Tennessee to expand production of lightweight materials for vehicles.

The Blount County plant says the loan would support the previously announced expansion, which is expected to add 200 jobs.

Media report the award, announced Thursday, is the first new loan in four years from the federal agency’s Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing program.

If finalized, the loan will support the plant’s expansion for developers to produce lightweight aluminum for vehicles to improve fuel efficiency.