Tribal casino gambling helped boost income among American Indians faster<br>than the general population in the 1990s, though income among tribes with no<br>connection to gambling rose faster than researchers expected over the same<br>period, a Harvard University researcher told a conference of tribal leaders<br>in Las Vegas last week.<br><br>Even so, most tribes remain in "staggering poverty" and would need at least<br>50 years to catch up to the general population at current growth rates, said<br>Harvard professor Joseph Kalt, the study's co-author and co-founder of the<br>Harvard Project on American Indian Economic Development at the John F.<br>Kennedy School of Government.<br><br>The study, released last month and featured in the Native American Times,<br>compared Census data on per capita income among casino tribes and nongaming<br>tribes from 1990 and 2000. The increases, after decades of stagnation, are<br>the first sign in more than a century that Indians are improving their<br>economic situation, the study found.<br><br>Per capita income among gaming tribes rose 36 percent from 1990 to 2000, to<br>$8,466, while the per capita income for the overall U.S population grew 11<br>percent to $21,587. Per capita income among nongaming tribes grew 30 percent<br>to $7,365.<br><br><br><br>