Editorial: Connecticut tribe tightens its belts
"The recession — if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck ... — is taking a bite out of the casino industry, so much so that the Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation is about to shed about 170 employees to save $40 million.

About 90 percent of the tribal government workers who were idled Friday will get generous buyouts; the rest will be laid off. Meanwhile, many of whose who remain will be redeployed as part of a consolidation of tribal government that aims to make it leaner and more efficient.

Cost savings are imperative because Foxwoods Resort Casino reported its slot-machine profits last month were only $58 million, a $7.3 million (11 percent) decrease from April 2007. Many of those who will lose their jobs are relatives of tribe members, but a spokes- man said it is unrealistic to expect payroll would be unaffected when revenues fall off this sharply: "It's difficult, but sometimes you've got to bite the bullet."

Tribal leaders are so certain short-term savings and long-term systemic changes to the tribal bureaucracy will pay big dividends, they're willing to wager huge sums on buyouts and even risk the financial viability of their casino.

Too bad Gov. Rell and the Democrats lack the same decisiveness, courage and business sense. "

Get the Story:
Editorial: Tribe shows state how to economize (The Waterbury Republican-American 5/31)

Related Stories:
Editorial: Tough times for Mashantucket Tribe (5/26)
Mashantucket Tribe plans to lay off employees (5/23)