According to the Illinois Department of Employment Security, Chicago's unemployment rate dropped to 9.7 percent in August, a decrease from last year's figure of 10.1 percent. Eight other metro areas in Illinois experienced a similar decline. Judging from the Reporter's analysis of the Department of Employment Security's numbers in 2008, this slight job growth probably hasn't extended to African-American neighborhoods hit hardest by the recession.
Also in the news...
- Mayoral candidate and City Clerk Miguel del Valle ran the first TV campaign ads today, which will continue through the week during cable news and talk shows. A del Valle spokesman said that he is eager to get his name circulated early because of the significant number of people showing interest in the position. If elected, he would become Chicago's first Latino mayor.
- Advance Illinois, an education reform group, announced that Illinois' K-12 public school system earned a D using its metrics. Only 33 percent of eighth graders are proficient in mathematics, and only 16 percent of students are enrolled in advanced classes. A federal grant for $35.9 million is coming to help Chicago Public Schools boost these dismal state averages.
- University of Chicago Law Professor Todd Henderson came under fire after writing a blog post in which he complained about his family's $250,000-plus income and Obama's plans to tax his family even more. He lamented that he may have to give up lawn-care services, a cleaning lady, art classes and other similar expenses. In a city where 9.7 percent of the population is jobless, it's no surprise that readers and pundits alike are dismayed at his rhetoric.
--Compiled by Ryan Jacobs