Compromise Reached on Education Budget

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By Alabama News Network

Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley says an education budget compromise will put more money into health insurance so employees will not face large increases in their premiums.

Bentley announced the agreement Friday, saying employees' take-home pay should not be reduced by inadequate insurance funding.

A conference committee in the Alabama Legislature has been working out differences between the House and Senate budget bills.

A Senate plan included a one-time bonus of 1 percent for education employees. The House didn't approve a bonus, but put more money toward insurance.

Legislators said they chose to focus on health insurance over a bonus. Bentley had previously championed a 2 percent pay raise for employees.

The proposal would fund the Public Education Employees' Health Insurance Plan at a level of $780 per individual per month.