Philadelphia Thursday received long-awaited state relief as the Pennsylvania legislature passed a bill that will balance the city’s budget and avoid drastic layoffs and service reductions.

The Senate approved House amendments to HB 1828 in a vote of 32 to 17. The vote will prevent 3,000 layoff notices that the city was poised to send out today absent final passage of the bill. Gov. Edward Rendell Thursday said he would sign the measure into law.

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