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Originally published Tuesday, April 10, 2012 at 5:40 PM

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Wash. lawmakers have final deal on pensions

Washington lawmakers have agreed to a final detail that would change how the state handles early retirements.

Associated Press

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OLYMPIA, Wash. —

Washington lawmakers have agreed to a final detail that would change how the state handles early retirements.

Democratic and Republican leaders said Tuesday evening that they are hoping to quickly move the measure out of the Senate. They said negotiators are still working on other areas but are largely in agreement about where things are headed.

The pension issue was a major sticking point holding up the state budget.

Democratic Sen. Jim Kastama said the plan would increase the size of the early-retirement penalty for state workers, so the size of their pension benefit would shrink. The plan would save the state an estimated $1.3 billion over 25 years.

Lawmakers also agreed to lower the assumed rate of return in the pension system.

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