By Steve Rensberry, Editor
Well it’s been another good year/bad year all rolled into one — mostly good on the local level I’d say, but fairly sad and bad when it comes to the national level. It’s obvious that we’re a country divided, not just socioeconomically but right down to the way we think about life, meaning, culture, and truth. I don’t about you, but I certainly don’t have all the answers. I do sincerely hope, however, that in 2020 things will be better. We need peace makers, not fire starters! That might be a long shot, with a pending national election, but a person can hope, right?
Some good things about life in 2019: gas prices have been relative stable, numerous infrastructure and building projects are under way locally and regionally, the unemployment rate is down, and life goes on, as imperfect and unpredictable as it always is. If the economy stays on track, my prediction is that 2020 will see more local development, an uptick in regional population growth, and more than just a few surprises.
Another piece of good news found its way into my in-box this week. According to a new study (US Drug Test Centers), Illinois has one of the lowest percentage of drunk-driving arrests in the nation, putting it at number 49. In 2018 the state had an average DUI arrest rate of 98.6 per 100, 000 population, compared to the national average of 330 per 100,000. The state saw a 30.3 percent decrease from 2009 to 2018, putting it at No. 23 in terms of the level of change. Now that’s the kind of news we can use! The 10 states with the highest DUI rates: South Dakota, North Dakota, Wyoming, North Carolina, Mississippi, New Mexico, Maine, Washington, Alaska, and Wisconsin. The 10 with the lowest: Illinois, Arkansas, Connecticut, Alabama, Missouri, Ohio, Florida, Louisiana, Massachusetts, and Delaware.
As always, as we head into 2020, the Times-Tribune appreciates your readership and support. Please keep us in the loop and we’ll do what we can to cover it in the paper.