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Mashantucket policing agreement with state officials still not signed

By Brian Hallenbeck

Publication: The Day

Published July 12. 2014 4:00AM

More than a month after belatedly canceling a planned ceremony to mark the event, the Mashantucket Pequot Tribe has yet to sign an agreement with the state that would give tribal police a greater role in policing the tribe's reservation, including Foxwoods Resort Casino.

The tribe is waiting for the state to respond to the tribe's latest proposed revisions in the agreement, a spokesman for the tribe said Friday.

Earlier in the week, a spokesman for the state Department of Emergency Services and Police Protection said he was "fairly confident" the agreement would be signed "fairly soon."

"We are actively working towards an agreement," said Scott DeVico, the DESPP spokesman. Asked to define "fairly soon," he said, "within the month."

The Mohegan Tribe reached a similar agreement with the state in May and has assumed day-to-day responsibility for policing Mohegan Sun and the tribe's reservation lands.

On June 11, Mashantucket tribal police and state, local and tribal officials assembled at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center, where Dora Schriro, the DESPP commissioner, was expected to swear in tribal police officers under the new agreement.

Schriro did not appear, and no ceremony took place.

"Both sides, at the last minute, discovered issues with some language (in the agreement)," DeVico said. "The commissioner was prepared to attend the ceremony until it was determined that the language differences were not going to be rectified in time."

DeVico said reaching an agreement with the Mashantuckets has been more complicated than it was with the Mohegans because the Mashantuckets "have many more tribal members living on the reservation."

b.hallenbeck@theday.com

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