ST. LOUIS (AP) - New Census Bureau figures show Illinois' poverty rate remained stubbornly near 15 percent last year, and anti-poverty advocates say that's a sign an economic recovery isn't trickling down to the least fortunate.
The latest figures suggest that 14.7 percent of Illinoisans, or about 1.85 million people, lived in poverty last year. That's down ever slightly from 15 percent, or 1.88 million, in 2011.
The national rate also remained at 15 percent.
Amy Terpstra of the Chicago-based Heartland Alliance's Social Impact Research Center says the latest figures may make the case for raising Illinois' minimum wage. It's set at $8.25 an hour. Gov. Pat Quinn is pushing that idea, but business executives say it could backfire and force employers to eliminate jobs.
The top health official in the nation is in St. Louis to take part in a discussion about the Affordable Care Act.
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius met with local and state officials as part of a nationwide push to educate taxpayers about changes coming with Obamacare on Thursday. Part of the ACA calls for an expansion in Medicaid, but the legislature has rejected that proposal.
Sebelius will met with officials at City Hall at 2 PM.
Police believe they have one captured one of two suspects who were involved in a series of car break-ins.
The crimes occurred overnight. Police say the two men entered six cars that were parked in the 5800 block of Walsh and Delor. Investigators say all of the cars were unlocked. Police chased the suspects from the scene, but caught only one. Officers used a stun gun to subdue the suspect.
The search continues for the second suspect.