- Associated Press - Thursday, April 13, 2017

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - A prominent Rhode Island business group has endorsed Gov. Gina Raimondo’s plan to cover two years of tuition at public colleges for state residents.

The Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce announced its support Thursday during an event with the Democratic governor.

Raimondo has been building political support for the plan, which could face opposition in the legislature. Democratic House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello has called the estimated $30 million-a-year program “unsustainable and fiscally irresponsible.”

Raimondo held a rally for the proposal last week with former U.S. Labor Secretary Tom Perez, national chairman of the Democratic National Committee. She’s also pulled in endorsements from other well-known Democrats, including former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick.

New York Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo recently signed into law a similar initiative there.

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