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Gov says union contract saves $900M

Published: Tuesday, March 5, 2013 4:10 p.m. CDT • Updated: Tuesday, March 5, 2013 4:10 p.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — An administration official says Gov. Pat Quinn will spend part of his budget address crediting a contract agreement with Illinois' largest union for $900 million in healthcare savings.

Quinn and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31 reached an agreement last week for a three-year deal after negotiating 15 months.

The tentative deal requires state workers to pay more toward healthcare and retirees to pay health insurance premiums for the first time.

That equals roughly $900 million savings over three years. That's according to an administration official familiar with Quinn's speech who isn't authorized to discuss it before Wednesday and would speak only on condition of anonymity.

Last year, Quinn signed legislation requiring longtime retired state employees to pay insurance premiums. Lawsuits challenging it are pending.

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