INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - New statistics show the number of inmates returning to prison in Indiana is going down.
It looks like work, but for Tim Hensley, this is a second chance at life.
"I was messing with drugs and got locked up and done about 62 months," said Hensley.
Hensley, who calls himself a former meth addict, now manages four other offenders on a maintenance crew at the Indiana War Memorial. His now full-time job started as part of a program to help him re-enter life outside prison.
"They like the way I worked here when I was an offender so they were glad to have me i guess so I worked hard for them started doing a good job."
In the past two years, Indiana's recidivism rate has dropped three percent meaning only 36 percent of inmates return to prison within three years. Department of Corrections officials attribute the drop to programs like the one Hensley was in.
Retired Air Force General and Indiana War Memorial Executive Director J. Stewart Goodwin has 14 offenders working at the memorial all are part of a re-entry program.
"We're getting more bang for the buck for state dollars and tax payers then we ever thought was possible," remarked Gen. Goodwin.
I could not think of any better job to have or anything better to do to try to repay back society then to be working here for the state taking care of the veterans house," said Hensley.
The state is also celebrating a drop in the rate of young offenders.
The Indiana Department of Correction says nearly eight out of 10 of those released in 2009 did not return to a state juvenile or adult correctional facility during the three year tracking period.
Hoosiers saw unbearably cold temperatures Thursday morning.
Mintonye Elementary School may be ready to open in August, but Southwestern Middle School won't be ready. That's the preliminary assessment Superintendent Scott Hanback told the Tippecanoe School Corporation school board Wednesday evening.
State police and the Indiana Department of Transportation say public safety is being endangered by metal scrappers.