Monroe County continues to rate among the safest places to live in all of Illinois, as evidenced by a new list announced Monday giving high marks to both Waterloo and Columbia.
The National Council for Home Safety and Security announced its list of “Safest Cities in Illinois for 2018” on alarms.org.
Waterloo ranked fourth on this year’s list, down slightly from the top overall ranking in 2017. Columbia, which did not crack the top 50 last year, ranked 19th on this year’s list.
Waterloo reported three violent crimes and 34 property crimes. Columbia reported just one violent crime and 79 property crimes. Both cities have populations slightly greater than 10,000.
Waterloo and Columbia are the only two metro-east cities in the top 20, the next such community being Glen Carbon at 23rd.
The National Council for Home Safety and Security is a trade association comprised of home security professionals. The council advocates for safe communities and home safety with a strong focus on community involvement.
To identify the safest cities in Illinois, the council reviews FBI Uniform Crime Report statistics along with its own population data and internal research.
The cities were ranked based on number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) and property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft) per 1,000 people.
These variables are then weighted, with violent crimes accounting for 1.5 more of the total (due to their severity) than property crimes.