Governor: Cut Jamestown celebration, fund mental health

FILE - In this July 26, 2016 file photo, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe waves on stage at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya, File)

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe is asking Republican lawmakers to cut spending on the 400th anniversary of the founding of the oldest legislative body in the country and redirect the money to mental health care reforms and other priorities.

The governor outlined his concerns with the GOP-controlled General Assembly’s budget proposals Friday.

He’s asking lawmakers to cut $5 million from a 2019 celebration that will commemorate the founding of the House of Burgesses at Jamestown. He wants them to restore more than $4 million for jail mental health screenings, plus money for the Department of Elections and workplace safety inspectors.

Republicans have said the governor is trying to score cheap political points by criticizing the celebration. They say the money is a good investment that will more than pay for itself.

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