As Casinos Struggle, Tribes Seek More Federal Aid
LEDYARD, Conn. (AP) — As a gambling slump squeezes profits at the Foxwoods Resort Casino, the tribe that owns the famously successful enterprise in southeastern Connecticut has begun receiving more assistance in the form of U.S. government grants.
Documents obtained by The Associated Press through the Freedom of Information Act show the money provided annually to the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation through the Interior Department and the Department of Health and Human Services has risen to more than $4.5 million. One former tribal employee says department leaders were encouraged to seek funding through federal grants.
Several other gaming tribes have been pursuing more federal grant money — a trend that critics find galling because the primary purpose of the law that gave rise to Indian casinos was to help tribes become financially self-sufficient.