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Amfuel's obligations

subject of hearing

A federal bankruptcy judge in Texas will hold a hearing today to consider allowing American Fuel Cell and Coated Fabrics Co., which has a plant in Magnolia, to pay employees and other obligations while it goes through voluntary reorganization under Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings.

Long known as Amfuel, the 70-year-old company filed the Chapter 11 petition Sunday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Fort Worth. It listed assets of between $1 million and $10 million and debts in the same range.

Its 20 largest creditors with unsecured claims include JEVAC Machine Inc. in Magnolia, at $127,660, and Health Advantage in Little Rock, at $121,241 for insurance premiums.

The company is based in Wichita Falls, Texas, and has operated in Magnolia since the end of World War II. Its bankruptcy petition said it has 243 employees, most of them in Magnolia.

The company nearly closed the Magnolia plant in September 2016, but management officials worked out a new agreement with United Steelworkers Local 607L to keep the plant open.

-- Stephen Steed

Trucker group marks

its 50th school visit

The Arkansas Trucking Association marked its 50th educational event this school year on Tuesday, when members of the industry group visited the Harrison School District in Boone County.

David O'Neal, the association's vice president of safety programs and industry engagement, said a team of 12 truck drivers has traveled around the state to talk about safety and to pitch career opportunities in the trucking industry.

"We intend each semester to reach as many schools as possible," O'Neal said.

The team will be in Lead Hill today for a presentation. O'Neal said when that is finished, the association will have visited all the Boone County schools. There's a strong connection to trucking in the county, with FedEx Freight based in Harrison. Four of the 12 team members drive for FedEx.

-- Dalton LaFerney

State index jumps

6.07 in hot market

The Arkansas Index, a price-weighted index that tracks the largest public companies based in the state, rose 6.07 to 397.47 Tuesday.

"The major averages closed at record levels as GOP lawmakers moved a step closer to completing tax reform by year end," said Bob Williams, senior vice president and managing director of Simmons First Investment Group Inc. in Little Rock.

The index was developed by Bloomberg News and the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette with a base value of 100 as of Dec. 30, 1997.

Business on 11/29/2017

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