Economic experts debate pros and cons of Mattiello’s car tax plan


EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello’s controversial plan to cut Rhode Island’s car tax is expected to be part of the proposed budget when it’s unveiled Thursday night.

Under the plan, the tax would be eliminated over the next six years and the state would reimburse cities and towns for the loss of revenue, at a total cost of $221 million.

Cutting the car tax appears to have widespread support among lawmakers, particularly those in the House, but experts have differing opinions.

Two “number crunchers” – John Simmons of the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council and Douglas Hall of the Economic Progress Institute – joined this week’s taping of WPRI 12’s Newsmakers to debate the pros and cons of Mattiello’s proposal.Host Tim White has the story in the above video, or click here to watch the full episode.

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