RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — Virginia state officials are telling lawmakers the expansion of a mental health hospital in Staunton is being delayed and costs are going up.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch reported Monday that an architect working on the $22.3 million project at Western State Hospital based drawings on an outdated building code.
The approximately nine-month delay that mistake caused comes as the state grapples with an overcrowding crisis at its mental hospitals. Officials say costs will be inflated by about $1 million.
Republican House Appropriations Chairman Chris Jones says he is "bitterly disappointed" and the mistake shows "a lack of leadership."
A top mental health official says the state's nine mental hospitals were operating at 97.5% of their capacity two weeks ago, with five housing more patients than beds.