Senate Finance Committee hears toll proposal

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The Senate Finance Committee has weighed the pros and cons in a hearing for the new toll plan put forth by Gov. Gina Raimondo.

The new revised Rhode Works plan remains largely the same; borrow money to speed up the repair and reconstruction of Rhode Island’s bridges and pay the money back with the revenue generated from truck tolls.

But the new revisions include a variety of tax credits and rebates specifically aimed at truckers who have been in great defiance of the plan.

“What we’ve done is put a thoughtful, fair and reliable plan together that will address those safety issues in the next 10 years,” said the Director of RIDOT, Peter Alviti.

Although many union construction workers believe the plan will put more people back to work, the President of the RI Trucking Association does not want to see any tolls.

“Our concern is that if this bill does go through and it is found after the fact that this does violate interstate commerce, then the incentives that have been put on the table will be pulled back,” said Christopher Maxwell.

Rhode Works was not in the budget plan that was passed by the House last week. House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello said when they are ready to act on the bill, they will do just that.

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