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Ill. union: State contract talks at standstill

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — A union for Illinois government workers says negotiations with the state are at a "virtual standstill."

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees says concessions demanded by Democratic Gov. Pat Quinn are "an insult to every state employee."

Quinn spokesman Abdon Pallasch says the state can't afford to keep salaries and benefits at their current levels. He told The (Springfield) State Journal-Register that even after cuts, state employees would have generous benefits.

The contract expired June 30, but it remains in effect while negotiations continue.

The union says employees may have to take "direct action" at their workplaces and communities to jumpstart the talks.

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