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RALEIGH, NC (AP) — The leader of the North Carolina House says he’s trying to alleviate the concerns of teachers and retired workers over their state health care plan that led Gov. Bev Perdue to veto a proposal to close a projected half-billion-dollar spending gap in the plan over the next two years.

Speaker Thom Tillis met Friday morning with representatives of the North Carolina Association of Educators, the State Employees Association of North Carolina and a group for retirees.

Perdue says she vetoed the State Health Plan this week in part because retirees and teachers didn’t have enough opportunity to negotiate plan changes that would require a monthly premium for state workers for the first time.

Tills said the Legislature needs to pass a bill by next week or miss out on savings.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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