Representative Nicholas A. Mattiello
Nicholas A. Mattiello was elected by his House colleagues as Speaker of the House in March 2014, and then has been re-elected in January 2015, 2017 and 2019 for full two-year terms. First elected in November 2006 to represent District 15 in Cranston, he served as the House Majority Leader from February 2010 until becoming Speaker.
Speaker Mattiello’s focus has been on improving the state’s economy and job climate, and providing tax relief for Rhode Islanders. Under his leadership, the state budgets enacted in 2017 through 2019 included the first three years of a six-year phase-out and ultimate elimination of the car tax. The Tax Foundation, a national non-partisan organization, presented him with Outstanding Achievement in State Tax Reform in October 2018 for his leadership in eliminating the car tax.
As Speaker, he has also reduced the corporate tax to the lowest rate in the Northeast, raised the exemption on the estate tax, eliminated the income tax for many Social Security recipients and other retirees, done away with the sales tax that businesses previously paid on their utility bills, and twice lowered the minimum corporate tax. In addition, the unemployment insurance tax has been cut, saving businesses an estimated $40 million on an annual basis; job-creation incentive programs have been funded, and regulatory burdens have been reduced.
These efforts have resulted in an unemployment rate lower than it has been in decades and a record number of Rhode Islanders working. Under Speaker Mattiello’s leadership, the minimum wage has also increased on four occasions and thousands of Rhode Islanders have received sick-leave benefits for the first time.
A strong proponent for public education and job training, the state has increased its investments in school construction funding, career and technical education, all-day kindergarten, pre-kindergarten and higher education assistance under his leadership as Speaker.
The budgets enacted under Speaker Mattiello have increased support for the developmentally disabled community, hospitals and nursing homes. In addition, the RI Partnership for Home Care presented him with the 2018 Legislative Champion Award for his advocacy on behalf of medically fragile Rhode Islanders to enable them to remain in their homes.
Speaker Mattiello sponsored the successful Rhode Island Constitutional amendment to restore the jurisdiction of the Ethics Commission over the General Assembly. Other good-government reforms enacted during his tenure include the elimination of the “Master Lever,” campaign finance and lobbying reform laws, and the posting of all financial disclosure statements of public officials on-line.
In 2018 and 2019, Speaker Mattiello sponsored bills to address the opioid crisis and strengthen school safety measures. He sponsored a law to create threat assessment teams in schools to identify potentially threatening behavior by those in the school community.
Under his leadership, the state enacted a “red flag” law to enable the courts to take guns away from those who are deemed to be a danger to themselves or others, and a law to disarm domestic abusers. He was honored by the Coalition Against Domestic Violence for the creation of a permanent funding stream that addresses domestic and dating violence.
He was also honored by the Humane Society and the Providence Animal Shelter for his leadership in ensuring passage of stronger laws to protect animals.
The Italo-American Club presented him its Man of the Year Award in 2017.
Speaker Mattiello is a 1981 graduate of La Salle Academy, a 1985 graduate of Boston College with a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting, and a 1988 graduate of Suffolk University School of Law in Boston, and is a member of the Rhode Island Bar Association. He is a self-employed attorney with an office in Cranston.
Speaker Mattiello is a member of the St. Mary's Feast Society and Oaklawn Grange. He previously coached baseball in the Cranston Western Little League and at the Cranston-Johnston Regional Catholic Middle School.
Speaker Mattiello, who was born on May 16, 1963, is a life-long Rhode Islander and a Democrat. He and his wife Mary Ann are the parents of two sons, Nicholas and Anthony.
State House, Room 323
Providence, RI 02903