Bankruptcy Court Judge Thomas Bennett

A federal judge has approved Jefferson County's plan to exit the second-largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history.

Bankruptcy Court Judge Thomas Bennett said Thursday he's approving the county's plan to cut and refinance its debt.

The county filed for bankruptcy in November 2011, citing more than $4 billion in debt. It was the nation's largest municipal bankruptcy until Detroit filed this year for $18 billion.

The bulk of Jefferson County's debt was more than $3 billion from sewer construction.