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Gov. Riley Cuts Festivals And Pet Projects From Budget

Montgomery, AL – Gov. Bob Riley has sent the state General Fund budget back to the Legislature with money for festivals reduced and funds for an expansion of the state Children's Health Insurance Program eliminated.

Riley delivered the amended budget Thursday. The Legislature can either accept or reject his changes in the $2.5 billion spending bill.

Riley cut in half the amount of money that legislators had included for festivals and other pet projects in their districts. He also took out money the Legislature had included to expand the children's insurance program to cover 14,000 more families. Riley used the savings to fund prisons.

Riley said keeping prisoners locked up is an essential responsibility of government and it should have priority over nonessential projects.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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