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State Employees May Get First Raise In Five Years This July

State employees may be getting their first raises in 5 years, after labor unions reached tentative agreements with the state Tuesday night. 

Wages will rise 1.5 percent this July, then 2.25 percent in both 2014 and 2015.  But, workers will have to contribute to their dental plans, and pay a gradually increasing health insurance deductible.

That is: IF union leadership signs off on the agreements. State Employees Association president Diana Lacey says the master bargaining team will present the agreement to her union’s leadership Thursday night:

The bargaining senate has the authority to either authorize the tentative agreement to go forward for a ratification vote to the full membership, or the bargaining senate could order the master bargaining team to resume negotiations, or declare impasse and move forward to mediation.

The changes to employee compensation would cost the state $38 million dollars. That money has yet to be added to the state budget, where a $50 million cut to state personnel has been proposed by the the GOP-led Senate. Those cuts remain a major sticking point in budget negotiations with the House.