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 July 23, 2003
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Narragansett Indian Tribe Wants to Sell Tax-Free Tobacco Products
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The Narragansett Indian tribe hopes to be selling tax-free tobacco products within a matter of weeks, but the state is calling the plan illegal. Narragansett Chief Sachem Matthew Thomas says the tribe is preparing to open a ``smoke shop'' on its land in Charlestown. He says state officials who claim the tribe must follow Rhode Island tax laws are mistaken. Thomas says he believes the tribe has the authority to sell products tax-free on its land. He says the tribe needs economic development opportunities. Currently, Rhode Island smokers pay a $1.32 excise tax on each pack of cigarettes. They also pay a seven-percent sales tax.
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