OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — As more budget cuts loom, Gov. Chris Gregoire is moving toward reopening contracts with Washington state employee unions to renegotiate health care benefits.

The Office of Financial Management sent a letter Wednesday to all the unions, one day before Gregoire is scheduled to unveil her proposed budget cuts for the upcoming special session next month.

The governor wants state employees to pay more in their health care premiums. Late last year, Gregoire and the unions agreed that state employees pay 15 percent of their health care premiums, while the state picked up the rest. At the time, Gregoire wanted 26 percent.

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