YAKIMA, Wash. — State workers will rally twice today in Yakima as part of a statewide effort pushing lawmakers to approve a state budget.

The rallies are planned for 11:30 a.m. outside the Department of Social and Health Services building at 1002 N. 16th Ave. and 4:30 p.m. outside the Labor and Industries office at 15 W. Yakima Ave.

The events are being organized by the Washington Federation of State Employees, part of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.

The union is lobbying the Legislature to approve a budget deal that would avert a potential shutdown of some state services. Legislators are in their second special session of the year as they wrangle budget issues that are complicated by a court order requiring improvements to education funding.

As part of the budget deal, the union wants the Legislature to approve a 4.8 percent pay raise that would be implemented over the next two years. Union officials say it would be the first raise for workers in seven years.

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