Stateline Midwest ~ November 2012
Illinois Sen. Jacqueline Collins remembers when her legislative district on Chicago’s South Side had plenty of grocery stores and family restaurants.
More of the nation’s teenagers are getting immunized against diseases such as meningitis and diphtheria, but U.S. vaccination rates also show wide variances among the states. In addition, federal data show little progress in the percentage of girls receiving the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine.
“We are very concerned about plateauing in HPV vaccination rates,” says Dr. Melinda Wharton of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Forty-three states and the District of Columbia saw an increase in real gross domestic product in 2011, a modest slowdown compared to 2010. Each region performed differently, with several states posting more than a 4 percent gain and one state posting a 7.6 percent gain. Most states fell between a 0.03 percent and a 3.3 percent growth rate from 2010 to 2011.
Although judicial elections have long been a mainstay of the electoral landscape in many states, they have seldom attracted the same level of attention routinely paid to partisan contests for legislative seats or constitutional offices.
In recent years, however, a number of high-profile supreme court races have increasingly called attention to the means by which judicial officers are chosen.
American citizens and businesses spent almost $62 billion on landscaping services in 2007, according to U.S. Census data. And to help keep those lawns and gardens pest-free, more than 102 million pounds of pesticides are applied yearly in the United States, according to Beyond Pesticides, a nonprofit group advocating for limited use of pesticides.
One of the biggest concerns about these chemicals is their potential impact on humans, which can include nerve damage, birth defects and cancer, reports the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.