Gov. Bobby Jindal used his line-item veto power 53 times to cut $3 million of projects proposed by Louisiana lawmakers for their districts, but left $31 million of legislative earmarks in the state budget for fiscal 2010.

Vetoed funding included appropriations for local museums, city and parish festivals, and civic organizations. Jindal said he left intact the funding for efforts that had a regional impact or were supported by state agencies.

He also vetoed a $14 million funding plan that legislators developed to keep open a state mental health clinic in New Orleans that he proposed closing in March.

The $14 million will be allocated to other mental health programs, with the New Orleans Adolescent Hospital operations combined with those of Southeast Louisiana Hospital in Mandeville.

“Just as families and businesses do in response to challenging financial times, we took steps to make sure that government lives within its means, passing a state budget for the upcoming fiscal year that tightens the belt of state government while also protecting critical services,” Jindal said in his veto message.

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