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Compromise Made On Pensions, Prescription Drugs In Maryland

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A move toward the middle -- seen as a significant step between the governor and the legislature to shore up the state's long-term fiscal health. The compromise worked out Monday addresses one of the trickiest budget hurdles between the two houses.

The panel settled on retiree prescription drug changes that will raise out-of-pocket expenses, but not as much as had been considered.

Currently, out-of-pocket expenses are capped at $700 a year. But that will rise to $1,500 for the retiree and $2,000 for a couple. The panel had been considering an out-of-pocket expense of $2,000 for the retiree and $3,000 for a couple.

The panel also decided to create a cost-of-living adjustment between 1 percent and 2.5 percent for retirees, but only to adjust for inflation.

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