LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Arkansas senators spent nearly three hours asking economic development officials about what the state stands to gain or lose by investing $125 million in a $1 billion steel mill that's planned for Osceola.

Gov. Mike Beebe told the upper chamber on Monday that he's confident the mill would be a successful business. But the financing package depends on Legislative approval of the state's portion. Legislators are being asked to approve borrowing the $125 million to help fund the Big River Steel LLC project.

Officials say the state should see a return on its investment within a few years.

Earlier Monday, the Arkansas Teacher Retirement System trustees agreed to invest $60 million in the mill, on the projection it could yield a 40 percent return.

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