Besides the high crime rate, Missouri is known for its poor quality of life and business climate. If you live in Missouri, you’ve probably noticed several negative things. These include Poor air quality, Poor business climate, and a high crime rate.
Poor quality of life
According to a recent report from Forbes and CNBC, Missouri ranks near the bottom of the country in terms of quality of life. The rankings are based on various metrics, including crime rates and health. The state also scores poorly on several other metrics, including LGBT inclusion and anti-LGBT bias. However, the state does rank well on air quality.
Chronic diseases are a significant cause of disability, premature death, and poor quality of life in Missouri. These diseases are more prevalent than the national average, and their medical costs significantly strain the state’s economy. As the population ages, this burden will only grow. Therefore, preventing chronic diseases is essential to the physical health of Missourians.
Residents of Missouri can also expect a lot of wind, thunderstorms, and occasional tornadoes. Additionally, the state is not remarkably tolerant, and many races do not feel at home. This climate can also negatively impact the quality of life. Despite these challenges, Missouri does offer a variety of living environments. It has several small farming towns and cities, but these communities often lack modern amenities.
The state has a decent standard of living compared to other parts of the country. However, the average household income is $46,408, almost $6,000 less than the national average. This means that 13.3 percent of Missouri residents live below the federal poverty line. Missouri is also known for having some of the most deadly tornadoes in the United States.
High crime rate
The high crime rate in Missouri has been a common problem for many years. The state has always had higher crime rates than the majority of states. In fact, in five out of the last 60 years, Missouri has ranked among the top ten highest crime states. However, it has never been listed among the lowest. The following table compares crime rates in Missouri to the neighboring states.
Missouri has several neighborhoods that have relatively low crime rates. For example, St. Louis is relatively safe. But the city of Ferguson has a high rate of property crime. This includes car theft, robbery, and burglary. In 2016, the FBI released two crime datasets to analyze crime trends across Missouri.
Even though Missouri has a high crime rate, the state has historically had lower violent crime rates. Missouri’s violent crime rate is also higher than the national average. According to the FBI 2020 Uniform Crime Report, Missouri reported 543 violent crimes per 100,000 residents, higher than the national rate of 399.
Although the Missouri property crime rate remains higher than the national average, it is decreasing. A recent survey showed that 51% of residents in the state use home security systems and property protection services. Another report found that 26% of Missourians reported that the COVID-19 pandemic had negatively affected their security.
Statistical data can be challenging to interpret. However, the FBI publishes an annual report on crime statistics for all states. Missouri has a relatively high rate of motor vehicle theft. However, a high rate of motor vehicle theft in the state is not indicative of a violent crime problem. While homicide and property crime are the major crimes in Missouri, these crimes are only a tiny fraction of the overall crime rate.
Poor air quality
In terms of toxic air pollution, Missouri is among the worst states in the country. In 2010, the state’s electricity-generating industry emitted five million pounds of harmful chemicals into the atmosphere. That is about two percent of the total toxic pollution from US power plants. In addition to ozone, Missouri also has higher than acceptable levels of carbon monoxide, particulate matter, nitrogen dioxide, lead (Pb), and sulfur dioxide.
In the United States, air quality has fallen since 2009, but the trend reversed last year. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, air pollution is responsible for nearly ten thousand premature deaths each year. According to the EPA, almost 141 million Americans live in areas where air quality is unhealthy or hazardous.
There are various methods for improving air quality, including driving less and switching to a hybrid or electric vehicle. In Missouri, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources has 50 air monitoring stations throughout the state that measure concentrations of ozone and other pollutants. One of the most effective ways to lower ozone pollution is to cut car emissions. Motor vehicle exhaust is one of the significant sources of nitric oxide, which oxidizes nitrogen dioxide in the atmosphere.
Respiratory conditions should limit their time outdoors and avoid prolonged outdoor activities. They should also avoid high-traffic areas and keep windows shut while outdoors. In addition, they should consider purchasing air purifiers.
Poor business climate
While the business climate in Missouri is far from the worst in the country, it remains a problem. According to recent rankings from CNBC and Forbes, Missouri is not the most attractive state for business. This can impact the quality of life in the state and its future economic growth. The Missouri Department of Economic Development has improved the business climate.
A survey conducted by Gallup found that nearly half of Americans do not feel that the business climate is good. According to the state’s economic outlook, Missouri ranks 29th in the nation for the business climate. The rankings are based on an equal-weighted average of 15 state policy variables. These include taxes and regulations, labor supply, economic climate, growth prospects, and quality of life.
The state is also focusing on reducing red tape and improving workforce training to attract companies to the state. Its business tax regime is one of the lowest in the country. The state has attracted several business leaders who have endorsed the business climate. One example is Dollar Tree CEO, Bob Sasser. Other recent measures include regulatory reform, tax reform, and a right-to-work referendum.
Although the state has the lowest business tax rates in the nation, Missouri still needs to make efforts to improve its competitiveness. Jared Walczak, vice president of state projects at the Tax Foundation, noted that Missouri’s tax structure is more favorable for new and growing firms than other states. The tax structure benefits businesses from a variety of sectors.
The state of Missouri’s economy is far from healthy. It’s been losing money for 21 years. The state’s gross domestic product would be 30 percent higher with more economic activity. That’s $85 billion in lost economic activity that could solve many problems. Yet Missouri continues to underfund its infrastructure and higher education budgets.
While Missouri’s education system needs improvement, there’s no reason to give up on it. There are some ways state leaders can invest public funds more wisely and improve the quality of education for all students, including those with disabilities and low-income status. In addition, competition and innovation could help improve the state’s education system and help low-income students achieve their educational goals.
The Great Depression severely impacted Missouri’s economy and blacks. Many jobs were lost or relocated, and whites replaced blacks. The Depression also destroyed black businesses, and white homemakers could no longer afford to hire black domestic servants. The Depression reduced black companies and limited the ability of black churches to provide aid to the needy. In addition, the Communist Party made significant efforts to recruit black activists. Meanwhile, the New Deal introduced large-scale welfare programs for all Americans.
While Missouri’s economy has gradually recovered from the recession, wages haven’t kept up. Almost 100,000 full-time Missouri workers live below the poverty line and make less than $26,000 annually. For a family of three, many live paychecks to paycheck. Even one unexpected car repair or medical bill can put a family into poverty.
Even the metro areas in Missouri aren’t the main engines of the state’s economy. Kansas City, for example, has underperformed most states in terms of population growth and income growth. The St. Louis area, which is the largest, has hardly outperformed the rest of the state.