🔥 Gambling success brings controversy for tribe - Reuters

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The casino raked in more than prosperity to the Pequot reservation; it brought Pequots there. There was no shortage of aspiring Indians eager.


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This is an undated aerial view of the Foxwoods Resort Casino on the Mashantucket Pequot Indian Reservation in Ledyard, Conn.


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The casino raked in more than prosperity to the Pequot reservation; it brought Pequots there. There was no shortage of aspiring Indians eager.


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Since , Foxwoods Resort Casino has offered guests The Wonder Of It All as The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation is a federally recognized Indian tribe.


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This is an undated aerial view of the Foxwoods Resort Casino on the Mashantucket Pequot Indian Reservation in Ledyard, Conn.


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The family that helped create the Pequot tribe's casino wealth says the tribe has MASHANTUCKET PEQUOT INDIAN RESERVATION, Conn.


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Foxwoods Resort Casino features deluxe accommodations, fine dining, a wide and continuity on and around North America's oldest Indian reservation (Est.


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Revenge of the Pequots: How a Small Native American Tribe Created the World's Most Indian Gaming and Tribal Sovereignty: The Casino Compromise.


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For two decades, the Mashantucket Pequots lived like Indian gambling royalty. Luxury cars abounded on their tiny, gated reservation of colonial.


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The casino raked in more than prosperity to the Pequot reservation; it brought Pequots there. There was no shortage of aspiring Indians eager.


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The town has been hurt somewhat by the loss of non-Indian jobs as the casino has contracted, Mr. MGM Grand is no longer part of the partnership, and now has a license to build its own casino in Springfield, Mass. Butler, the Pequot chairman, said his government has taken pains to establish education as a priority, and to make sure that tribal youth take advantage of college tuition assistance programs. The end of the incentive payments, to her, signaled a loss of the opportunity to go to school and raise her children without worry. Home Page World U.{/INSERTKEYS}{/PARAGRAPH} The tribe has also talked of teaming with the Mohegans to open a third Connecticut casino, which some public officials support as a way to keep gambling dollars in the state. Tribal leaders declined to give details about their plans and, consistent with past practice, would authorize only a small number of officials and tribal members to speak about their circumstances. William Satti, a tribal spokesman, said the tribe intends to reopen the museum in the spring. Several Pequots spoke about having ended their habit of buying expensive cars. It has a massive diorama of a 17th-century Pequot village, a restaurant, an auditorium, a museum shop, libraries and archives for archaeological and documentary research and a foot-tall tower with a viewing platform that looks out onto the reservation and the Foxwoods Resort and Casino less than a mile away. Members of the tribe must be able to trace their lineage to 11 Pequot families recorded in the and censuses. The annual payouts to tribal members have ceased, and some, in search of work, have moved. Wayne Reels, a tribal member who works in cultural affairs, said that there were representatives from about 50 tribes this year. But those heady days are long gone. Other changes were subtle. Some members were able to find jobs at the casino, the museum, or in the tribal government or in tribal health services. Merrill, like many other tribal members, went to work for the tribal government and is now vice president of human resources and administration. Rice says he barely sees any Pequots at the dealership these days. Because of their wealth, the Pequots came to represent Native Americans in the Northeast, where tribes as distinct political, social or economic entities are rarer than they are in western states. But it is clear that as casino gambling, a staple for many Indian tribes, has steadily been legalized across the country, the Mashantucket Pequot have been left to navigate a future that looks different from its recent past. Merrill was a part-time student raising three children as a single mother when the payments stopped. Butler , the tribal chairman. New York and Massachusetts, which supply Foxwoods with a stream of customers, are preparing to open non-Indian casinos in the next few years, increasing competition in the region. Butler said. The tribe is by no means destitute. {PARAGRAPH}{INSERTKEYS}Encased in glass, the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center rises, improbably and on a grand scale, from the wooded swamplands of eastern Connecticut. When the museum opened in , the outlook for the tribe was bright. Mark Bancroft, assistant to the mayor of Ledyard , the town closest to the reservation, said that five or six houses on tribal housing property outside the reservation had been torn down, and that some who had lived on the reservation had moved to Providence, R. Like other museum workers, the staff member declined to be identified so as not to jeopardize the severance package the tribe was offering. But 45 of the 55 employees are being laid off, at least temporarily, suggesting that closing the museum is an attempt to adapt to a new financial reality. The tribal government has been able to maintain the services that were built up when the casino was profitable, including a child education center, a fire station and a health clinic. That figure did not include what it earned from table games, hotels, and concerts and other events. The casino is in debt in part because of competition — including competition with Mohegan Sun , a casino run by the Mohegan tribe eight miles away — and in part because of mismanagement and overexpansion. Lifestyles have changed, too. Tribal leaders take some solace in the fact that the Pequots have rebounded before, going from near-extinction in the 17th century and again in the s, when the reservation had just one year-round resident, to becoming one of the wealthiest tribal nations by the end of the 20th century. Pequot officials said the museum is closing for repairs, and also so they can find an executive director and fill a position that has been vacant for several months.