I've run into the same problem as well, and I have to say that everything works fine provided that you use the "right" container with the right jars (el-api in this case). I solved the problem using another tomcat plugin called t7 and then adjusting the tomcat version to 6.0.28. Anyway I think that tweaking the deps in the plugin as depicted here http://mojo.codehaus.org/tomcat-mave...ersion.htmlcan solve the problem.
Another approach is to manually delete tomcat-plugin from your local repo and try again.
you can find the t7 plugin here: