"On the surface, it would seem like a simple swap. A municipality gives a private entity a 76-acre parcel that it has abandoned in exchange for a 102-acre farm property.
But, nothing is simple when it comes to the Mashantucket Pequots and its neighboring towns. The fact that Ledyard and the tribe are even discussing a land swap can be seen as a positive step in their relationship.
The town will vote on the land swap Tuesday, along with its budget. It will be a test whether the town is ready to move forward or will let lingering fears about the tribe and its intentions rule the day.
We hope this debate and the vote results, whatever may be, are a clear sign to both that much work still needs to be done to heal old wounds. Dialogue has opened between town leaders and the tribal leaders. That dialogue must continue, but it also must extend outward to the residents.
With the largest casino in the world, the tribe has irrevocably changed the region. It must recognize that many residents fear what the future may hold. The tribe could change that by sharing more about its plans with its neighbors.
Being a good neighbor sometimes means going beyond what you are obligated to do. "
Get the Story:
Our view: Land swap talks are positive step for tribe, Ledyard
(The Norwich Bulletin 5/17)
Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Nation plans land