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      Teachers, other public employees may see a raise

      Teachers and other South Carolina public employees may get their first raise in four years.

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Teachers and other South Carolina public employees may get their first raise in four years.

      A House budget-writing panel approved Wednesday increasing a key education funding source by $152 million, which translates to teacher raises. Amounts will differ by district, depending on whether they've been able to fund step increases through local taxes.

      The panel's budget brings the so-called base student cost to $2,012 for 2012-13. That's $132 more per student than this year.

      Panel chairman Rep. Kenny Bingham says legislators wanted to make a statement that education is a priority, and designating $2,012 in 2012 was a way to do that.

      A separate panel approved a 2 percent raise for other state workers, costing $28 million. Subcommittees are working separately before the full Ways and Means Committee meets.

      (Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)