(AP) — Fort Wayne Community Schools is cutting the hours of 610 part-time teaching aides and cafeteria workers to save money and to avoid providing them health insurance under the federal health care overhaul, its chief financial officer said.

FWCS is cutting their hours from 30 to 25 each week beginning June 3 because insurance would have cost $10 million, CFO Kathy Friend said.

The nearly 31,000-student district expects to have a tighter budget in 2015, Friend said.

"We have to make the decision we're making because of a budget situation, and we really have to make it because of the insurance issue," she said. "There's not an easy answer to this problem."

Beginning in January 2014, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will require employers with at least 50 full-time employees to offer health insurance to employees who work at least 30 hours per week.

"This is not just an FWCS problem," Friend said. "It's something that almost all employers with part-time employees are trying to resolve."

Not all of the district's part-time workers are getting their hours cut. Its remaining 230 part-timers will continue working 30 hours per week and become eligible for health insurance, Friend said.

Employees were notified of the changes May 17.

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