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Illinois reaches agreement with state employee union

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Gov. Pat Quinn is touting a recent contract agreement with Illinois' largest union as one way his administration has saved money, including $900 million in health care costs.

In his Wednesday budget address the Chicago Democrat called it "unprecedented" among his gubernatorial predecessors and a "landmark" agreement.

His administration and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 31 reached a tentative agreement last week. They reached a three-year contract after negotiating for 15 months.

The proposal requires state workers to pay more toward health care and requires retirees to pay health insurance premiums for the first time. All that will add up to the $900 million savings over three years.

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