Overriding some opposition, state planning panel unanimously backs economic development plan

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PROVIDENCE, Rhode Island — A state panel has backed an economic development plan that supporters say Rhode Island needs and that opponents call a form of socialism.

The Providence Journal reports (http://bit.ly/1gE23RO) that the State Planning Council voted unanimously Thursday in favor of the Rhode-Map RI plan.

The 18-month work project outlines six goals and offers hundreds more suggestions on how to make the most of the state's assets and include its diverse populations.

Criticis say the plan will force local residents to cede property rights to the federal government.

House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello is not required to bring the plan to a vote or follow its suggestions. He says he prefers to focus on developing specific policies, strategies and legislation for job-creation and improving the state's economy.

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