The budget commission that’s running the city of Woonsocket has asked area lawmakers to introduce a bill that would authorize a $2.5 million dollar supplemental tax increase. It’s part of a plan to bail out the financially distressed community.
The average Woonsocket resident would pay an additional $150 in property taxes and $90 in vehicle taxes under terms of a supplemental tax bill introduced by two state lawmakers. The aim is to raise $2.5 million. It’s part of a larger plan to erase a $17 million deficit over the next five years.
Woonsocket city council president John Ward says he expects the General Assembly to turn down the request if other parts of the deficit closure plan, such as union concessions, cannot be agreed on.
"I think it does have a chance," Ward says. "One of the things the delegation is looking for is some relative certainty that the other component parts of the plan are assured – that being the negotiations with the unions and the negotiations with the retirees over their COLA and health benefits."
COLA refers to cost of living adjustments.
Last year a supplemental tax for the city failed to garner legislative support when Representative Lisa Baldelli-Hunt of Woonsocket led opposition to it.