TRENTON, N.J. (AP) -- New Jersey's state Senate has given final passage to a measure that would extend the cap on arbitration awards to police and firefighters.

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It now heads to Gov. Chris Christie's desk.

Christie hailed a 2 percent cap on the awards adopted in 2011 as a key in keeping municipal property tax bills across the state from rising faster.

The original cap expired earlier this year as officials disputed how it should look going forward. The Democrat-controlled Legislature wanted it to apply only to bargaining units that had not already had a contract with annual raises under 2 percent. Christie issued a conditional veto, saying there were too many loopholes.

Under the compromise version, arbitration raises could be 2 percent per year but include compounding.


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