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Career Tech's budget approved

NORMAN, Okla. (AP) -- The state Board of Career and Technology Education has approved an operating budget for fiscal year 2006.

The board Thursday approved a $130-million budget, a $6.4-million increase from fiscal year 2005 budget.

Chief Financial Officer Bill Beierschmitt says even with the increase the budget is flat.

It includes an increase of $357,700 for longevity pay and a $700 annual salary increase for all employees.

Director Phil Berkenbile says the agency will face a 12 percent increase for employee health insurance premiums in January. He says the districts will have to make up some of that using carryover funds.

Berkenbile says officials plan to ask the Legislature in February for additional money to cover that expense.
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