NEW YORK (AP) — New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has signed a bill to spend up to $20 million on security guards at private and religious schools.

De Blasio signed the bill Tuesday. He said he believes it will help police and other agencies "keep our communities safer."

The City Council voted 43 to 4 last month to reimburse nonpublic schools with at least 300 students for expenses to hire unarmed security guards.

The New York Civil Liberties Union said the bill amounted to unconstitutional government support for religious institutions.

But the executive vice president of the Orthodox Union called Tuesday's bill signing a victory for thousands of families.