PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The cost of workers' compensation in the state of Rhode Island has increased 54% in the last decade, alarming state leaders.

WPRI reports more than 200 active state employees were out on workers' compensation in June, as well as an additional 315 former employees.

The increase has cost taxpayers more than $30 million during the 2018-19 fiscal year. It has also pushed state leaders to make some changes that they hope will improve the system.

Rhode Island entered into a contract with a state-chartered insurer in May to take on the state's issue with employee workers' compensation system.

Beacon Mutual, the Warwick-based company, will be paid about $1.7 million in exchange for a pledge to improve both workplace safety and the process that takes place after an employee is injured.

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