Early retirement proposal heads to state Senate

The Senate has been studying the plan

BOSTON (AP) — The fate of Gov. Charlie Baker’s plan to offer early retirement to thousands of state government employees could be decided within the next week.

The administration is counting on about 4,500 executive branch workers opting for early retirement, saving the state more than $170 million in the fiscal year starting July 1.

The Senate has been studying the plan and could vote this week.

The House voted overwhelmingly last month to back the program, despite objections raised by several lawmakers about its scope. They’re questioning why early retirement would be made available only in the executive branch and not all of state government.

The administration says it only has control over executive branch hiring. The plan would allow state agencies to hire replacements until they reached 20 percent of the total salaries of those who left.

Copyright 2015 Associated Press

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