Happy New Year!

Dear Tribal Community,

Happy New Year!

May the Creator bring you and your family health, happiness and prosperity in 2013.

These are exciting times for the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, and I look forward to our Tribal Nation continuing to achieve great things in the New Year. Let’s continue to push forward as one Tribal family toward a brighter future for us all.
Just like our ancestors before us, we will persevere against all odds and raise our Tribal Nation to the highest of all highs, to shine bright like the sun and soar high like the eagle with “Wuneeshkeety” Good Medicine!

Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)

Merry Christmas 2012

Dear Tribal Community,

Merry Christmas!

I hope that this Christmas Eve message finds you warm, safe, and enjoying the holiday with family and friends. I send my best wishes to you for good health, happiness and togetherness on this blessed day.

The Mashpee Wampanoag people have always prioritized family and the collective good, and I am so happy to see that spirit on display during this Christmas season. Thank you to all who have helped make this holiday brighter for those who are in need, those who are hurting physically or spiritually, and those who need an extra helping hand. Thank you for helping provide gifts for Tribal children, support for Tribal families, and assistance and kindness to our Tribal Elders. Thank you to our traditional leaders for the important work you do every day to benefit our people and remind us to maintain, celebrate, and pass on our Wampanoag values in this modern world.

I am proud every day of the goodness that our Tribal family displays, and I am honored every day to serve as your Chairman. Thank you for the trust you have placed in me, the support you have shown, and the guidance you have given to me. It is truly one of the greatest gifts of my life to lead the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe as Chairman.

I pray that the Creator continues to watch over us and guide us. I pray that those who have passed on to the spirit world have been relieved of their pain, and know that we love and honor them and continue to hold them in our hearts.

May your Christmas be full of love, family and togetherness.

Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)

Today's Gaming Commission Meeting

Dear Tribal Community,

Today, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission unanimously voted to make no changes to the process we are following to bring a Mashpee Wampanoag destination resort casino to Southeastern Massachusetts, and to postpone any decision on pursuing a back up commercial application process.

We are pleased that the Gaming Commission has acknowledged our progress, our unique federal rights, and the fact that we have met every requirement under the Expanded Gaming Act. We look forward to continuing a cooperative relationship with the commission.

Today the Gaming Commission also acknowledged the risks and complications of adopting a back up plan. However, we still contend that having one is not really necessary since we are so much further along than any other project in the state. They know that Governor Patrick is working with us to get federal approval of our land in trust application and we are working with him on a revised compact. They also acknowledged that even without a compact, our tribe has the federal right to conduct gaming once our land is taken into trust. That said, we continue to strongly prefer to work together with the Commonwealth to bring a first class destination resort casino to Taunton.

With a great location, a host community agreement, an ongoing environmental review process, and a successful public referendum, we are ahead of any other potential development. We are determined to break ground as quickly as possible so that we can bring good jobs and opportunity to not only our tribe and Taunton, but all of southeastern Massachusetts.
Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)

IGA Reached

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A senseless tragedy

Dear Tribal Community,

Like many of you, I have spent the last day trying to comprehend the incredible tragedy that occurred yesterday at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, CT. But nothing can make sense of this senseless act. There is no way to explain what could drive someone to commit these evil acts – especially against innocent children and those who cared for them.

I am so grateful for my family, friends, and Tribal community. Today, I recognize how fragile life can be, and I hope that each of us can take some time to tell each other how truly thankful we are for the people in our lives. Let’s honor the children, teachers, staff, families and first responders of Newtown by holding each other a little closer, being kind to each other, and showing compassion in our daily lives. I can say without hesitation that I love my Tribal family, and pray every day for your safety, good health, and happiness.

The children in our lives may be having an especially difficult time processing the tragic events of yesterday. They are exposed to this horrific news on television, radio, and the internet, and may not always tell us that they are hurting. Some tips for how to talk to children about this tragedy can be found here.

Let us pray to the Creator to provide comfort and peace to all those affected by this senseless tragedy. Let us also pray that, with the Creator’s guidance, we will never let evil prevail.

Let us hold our children tight, and hold each other in our hearts.

Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)

We will be successful

Dear Tribal Community,

Today, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission discussed opening up a process for commencing background checks on potential commercial casino developers interested in the Southeastern Massachusetts region. They made no commitment to going beyond the background check process. They plan to vote on a plan next week.

We understand the gaming commission wants to have a backup plan, but we believe it will be unnecessary because we will be successful in our plans for a destination resort casino in Taunton.

We are pleased with the strong support that Governor Patrick is giving our land in trust application, and our project is much further along than any other in the Commonwealth. It is the only one in Massachusetts to have a host community agreement and to have won the support of the voters in a local referendum. As a federally recognized tribe we have the unique right to conduct gaming in our ancestral homeland. Once we get the green light, we expect to start construction and put people to work immediately.

No one is more interested in bringing jobs and economic benefits to Southeastern Massachusetts than the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe. We are not out of state developers, but have a long and very proud history here in the Commonwealth and a vested interest in the shared future of our Tribe and our neighbors.

Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)

The Truth About Our Progress

Dear Tribal Community,

I want to share with you my guest editorial published in today’s Cape Cod Times. It’s important that the truth about the amazing progress we have made on our plans for a destination resort casino are known. The fact is, we are further along than any other project in Massachusetts, and we have met every single deadline set before us. We, like others in Massachusetts, are excited about the jobs and economic development opportunities that this project will bring and want construction to begin as soon as possible. That’s why we have worked so hard to move our plans forward, and why we continue to push every day to make progress on the work that remains to be completed.

I give thanks to Tribal Council, our spiritual leaders, and the many Tribal members who have supported and worked hard to make such enormous progress. Working together, we will be successful in bringing jobs and economic opportunity to the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe, the City of Taunton, and all of Southeastern Massachusetts.

Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)

Wampanoag making progress on casino

By CEDRIC CROMWELL
December 08, 2012

As a federally recognized tribe, we place great value in our legally protected right to conduct gaming in our ancestral homeland. We intend to exercise this right not only for the benefit of our people, but for everyone in southeastern Massachusetts — a region that desperately needs economic development and jobs.

Studies have shown that our project will not only have a positive economic impact on Taunton, but on New Bedford, Fall River, Brockton and the entire southeastern Massachusetts region. We expect construction to begin next year, which will create a minimum of 1,000 construction-industry jobs.

We also want to broaden the economic benefits. We plan on partnering with local chambers of commerce to create a regional marketing program to boost tourism throughout the region. Once we open, 2,500 people will begin promising careers at our destination resort casino. In addition, we plan on contracting with small businesses throughout the area for supplies, goods and services.

The Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe very much appreciates the concern that some officials have expressed about any potential delays in developing a resort casino in southeastern Massachusetts.

We share the Gaming Commission’s desire to see real progress in every region of the state. We understand that it is part of its job to think about and speculate on all the various angles and possibilities that could occur in each region.

However, the destination resort casino that we have proposed for southeastern Massachusetts is much further along than any other project in the state. We are making significant progress.

The project is already under design. The development plans are now under environmental review by federal and state officials. We have already reached a host agreement with the city of Taunton, and the voters have overwhelmingly approved the project. Mitigation funds have already been set aside, and we have already issued the first payment to Taunton.

It is our expectation that we will be ready to break ground next year once the federal government approves our land in trust application. By then, the state Legislature will have had plenty of time to act on a revised compact. So far, the delays in finalizing an agreement have not affected our overall construction schedule.

While we appreciate the concern over delays in developing resort casinos in all regions in the commonwealth, it is our project in Taunton that has actually made the most progress to date. Our tribe has made a significant investment of time and money to move this project forward. Yet at the same time, our progress is also due to the hard work of many people, including Gov. Deval Patrick, the Massachusetts Legislature, the people of Taunton, the city’s friends and neighbors, and its mayor, Tom Hoye.

We have every intention of keeping up this brisk pace and within the next 12 months we will start revitalizing the economy of southeastern Massachusetts — a place we love and have called our home for thousands of years.

Cedric Cromwell is chairman of the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe.

Christmas Events for Tribal Kids and Families

Dear Tribal Community,

All Tribal children and their families are invited to upcoming events to celebrate the Holiday Season and make sure every Tribal child has a wonderful Christmas.

Children’s Christmas Shopping Spree!

Tribal children may purchase up to six gifts for 50 cents per gift.

Saturday, December 8

1:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Mashpee High School


Breakfast with Santa

Tribal children and families are invited to breakfast with Santa. Hot breakfast will be served, Santa and his helpers will greet the children, then Santa will give out gifts to the children.

Mashpee:

December 15

9:30 am – 1:30 pm

Quashnet Valley School on Old Barnstable Road

New Bedford:

December 16

10:30 am – 1:30 pm

New Bedford Tribal office, 1913 Purchase Street, New Bedford

Please spread the word, so all Tribal children can participate. Hope to see you there!

Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)

 

UPDATE: Bus and Ticket Info for Peltier Benefit Concert

UPDATE:

Contacts for Discount tickets for Concert to Benefit Leonard Peltier

Dear Tribal Family:

A concert to benefit Leonard Peltier featuring headline performer Jackson Browne, with a traditional introduction performed by the Wakeby Lake Drum, is being held on Friday, December 14 at the Beacon Theater in New York City. Download more information on the concert here.

The Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe is providing free coach bus transportation to the event. A limited number of discounted tickets are available for $35 each. Each person riding the bus to the concert is responsible for purchasing a ticket.

To purchase a ticket and reserve space on the bus you must contact either Paula Peters at 508-965-5140 or paula@smokesygnals.com or Dawn Blake-Souza at 508-524-2001, or dblakesouza@gmail.com as soon as possible.

Bus space and tickets are limited and will be reserved on a first come first served basis!

The bus will depart from the tribal grounds at 483 Great Neck Road in Mashpee at noon on Friday, December 14. A second pickup has been arranged at the Mt. Pleasant Street Park and Ride in New Bedford at 1 pm. The bus will return directly after the event.

Imprisoned unjustly for more than 37 years Leonard is considered the American Indian Movement’s premier political prisoner. Leonard is serving two life terms in the deaths of two FBI agents during a siege at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in 1976. He has maintained his innocence throughout his ordeal as evidence of corruption, coercion of witnesses, and improper procedures have defined this case. To learn more visit www.whoisleonardpeltier.info.

Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)

Community Input Design Meeting Dec. 6

Dear Tribal Community,

There will be a Community Input Design Meeting for Project First Light, the Mashpee Wampanoag Destination Resort Casino, on Thursday, December 6th at 6:00 pm in the Executive Trailer at 483 Great Neck Road South in Mashpee. Please use this opportunity to offer your thoughts and ideas on the design of this very important economic development project for our Tribal Nation. Your input is important and we look forward to hearing from you.

Form more information, please contact Tribal Councilwoman Yvonne Avant at yavant@mwtribe.com or 508.477.0208.

Kutaputunumuw;

Cedric Cromwell
Qaqeemasq (Running Bear)