PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - Rhode Island lawmakers have turned to local business leaders and economic development experts from Massachusetts and Connecticut on Thursday to look for answers to the state's longstanding economic problems.
The House cancelled its daily session Thursday and instead held an economic summit to discuss ways to improve the state's business economy.
Lawmakers invited top economic development officials from its neighboring states to discuss what's working in their states. Other panelists included local business owners, higher education officials and a top labor union leader.
Panelists told lawmakers the state needs a clearer economic development strategy, fewer business regulations and more investments in education and workforce development.
Top lawmakers say addressing the state's economy - and its 10.2 percent unemployment rate - is the year's top priority.