Sat, Mar 17, 2018 03:18 AM
Wednesday, March 8, 2017 issue

Did you know?

01/04/2008 - According to the Energy Information Administration (EIA), the average household in the United States can expect their heating bills to increase by 10 percent this winter. While that's a significant percentage increase, for most homes that 10 percent bump equates to roughly $88 over the course of the winter season, which is designated as Oct. 1 through March 31 by the EIA. The people most negatively affected by the increase will be those who use heating oil. On average, about one out of every three homes in the Northeast use heating oil. Those homowners can expect to see their heating bill increase by 22 percent this winter. Throughout the south, many homes are heated through electricity. Such homes can expect a mild increase of 4 percent this winter, or about $32 over the course of the season. While fuel costs play a role in the increase, the weather is playing a role in the estimates as well. The National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration predicts this winter will be 4 percent colder than last year.

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In 2005, the poverty rate in the United States was 12.6 percent, meaning 37 million Americans were living below the poverty line. That's an increase of 6 million since the turn of the century.

For a family of five in 2005, the poverty line established by the federal government was $23,613. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the states with the highest poverty rate were Mississippi (21.3 percent) and Louisiana (19.8 percent), which indicates the larger poverty epidemic in the southeastern United States, which had five states among the 10 most impoverished. The District of Columbia had the third highest poverty rate (19 percent), and also had the highest rate of children living in poverty (32.2 percent).

As for cities with the highest poverty rate, the Census Bureau reports that, in cities with a minimum population of 250,000, Cleveland, Ohio, had the highest poverty rate (32.4 percent), followed by Detroit (31.4) and Miami (28.3).

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