Members of the largest state employee union in Illinois and Governor Pat Quinn's administration have reached a tentative contract agreement. The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees says a deal was reached after midnight. Quinn's office confirmed the agreement. Further details of the agreement were not immediately available. Negotiations between AFSCME and Quinn's office have been contentious and union members had started preparing for a strike.
The negotiations came as Quinn has been locked in several battles with AFSCME. The union opposes efforts to reduce retirement benefits and increase health insurance costs, which have been a central theme on pension overhaul talks. Also, the union is angry that Quinn withheld pay raises provided by the last contract.
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