Samba schools protest against budget cuts for Carnival

Samba school members wave a giant flag as they march toward the Sambadrome during a protest against mayor Marcelo Crivella in Rio de Ja

A samba school member sings in front the City Hall during a protest against Mayor Marcelo Crivella in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday,

Samba school members sing as they march toward the Sambadrome during a protest against mayor Marcelo Crivella in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

A small group of samba school members pray in the Sambadrome during a protest against Rio de Janeiro Mayor Marcelo Crivella in Brazil,

Members of samba schools pray as they stand in the Sambadrome during a protest against mayor Marcelo Crivella in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Members of Rio de Janeiro's samba schools have put on a boisterous protest against the mayor's proposal to slash city funds for next year's Carnival.

The demonstration Saturday outside the city hall came in response to Mayor Marcelo Crivella's decision to cut by half the city's contribution to the celebration. He plans to reduce city hall's contribution to each school to $320,000 (1 million reals) and says the difference will be spent on resources for children's day care centers.

Dressed in the colors of their respective schools, approximately 200 people marched from city hall to the Avenida Marques de Sapucai, also known as the "Sambadrome."

Protesters say Crivella's cuts are being driven by his personal religious beliefs. The mayor is a gospel singer and former evangelical bishop.