GOP Leaders Claim $1.1B in Ala. Government Savings

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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Gov. Robert Bentley and other Republican leaders say they've saved Alabama taxpayers about $1.1 billion in total spending.

Republican officeholders announced the figure during a news conference in Montgomery on Monday.

Bentley says state government was broke when Republicans took over in 2011, but their efforts to reduce costs and increase efficiency are paying off.

The governor's office released a breakdown showing the largest share of claimed savings came from changing state pension rules. Workers are now required to pay a larger share of their salaries into retirement, saving the state about $346 million.

The state also has cut more than 3,000 jobs from the government payroll, saying another $161 million.

Democrats have accused the GOP majority of cutting expenses on the backs of state workers.

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