Bredesen signs state spending plan into law

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Gov. Phil Bredesen has signed the state's nearly $30 billion spending plan into law.

The legislation, which includes $12.8 billion in state dollars, was signed by the governor on Friday.

It relies on $185 million from the state's cash reserves instead of new taxes to fill a $150 million shortfall. The plan also includes a relief program for Tennessee flood victims and saves a program to combat infant mortality.

Tennessee has the 47th worst infant death rate in the country, with Memphis' death rate ranking the worst among U.S. cities and comparable to that of some Third World countries.

The House passed the budget 94-0, and the Senate approved it 30-3.

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