The state House of Representatives voted 70-3 to allow residents to vote on whether to shorten the name from State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations to simply "State of Rhode Island," WPRI-TV, Providence, R.I., reported Tuesday.
The state Senate passed a similar bill, but the two houses must settle on a single version before it can go forward.
Critics of the "Providence Plantations" portion of the state name say it is evocative of slavery, while opponents of the name change say it is an unnecessary abandonment of tradition, WPRI-TV said.
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