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Tennessee House passes $37.5 million budget

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — The Tennessee House passed a $37.5 billion budget, but only after arguments over whether to take money away from the city of Memphis as punishment for removing Confederate Statues last year.

Gov. Bill Haslam asked for $211.8 million more for K-12 education, including $55.1 million for teacher pay raises. He added $30 million to fight opioid abuse and another $30 million for school safety following the shootings in Florida in February that killed 17 people. The governor also included $99.1 million for higher education.

The appropriations bill passed Tuesday in the House 87-5.

A last-minute amendment to the bill stripped $250,000 that would go to Memphis toward its bicentennial celebration next year. The Republican-dominated House did it to punish Memphis for taking confederate statues down under cover of darkness.