[Federal Register Volume 75, Number 123 (Monday, June 28, 2010)]
[Notices]
[Pages 37245-37252]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2010-15605]



[[Page 37245]]

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Part IV





Office of Management and Budget





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2010 Standards for Delineating Metropolitan and Micropolitan 
Statistical Areas; Notice

Federal Register / Vol. 75, No. 123 / Monday, June 28, 2010 / 
Notices

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OFFICE OF MANAGEMENT AND BUDGET


2010 Standards for Delineating Metropolitan and Micropolitan 
Statistical Areas

AGENCY: Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, Office of 
Management and Budget (OMB), Executive Office of the President.

ACTION: Notice of decision.

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SUMMARY: This Notice announces OMB's adoption of 2010 Standards for 
Delineating Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas. The 2010 
standards replace and supersede the 2000 Standards for Defining 
Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas. In arriving at its 
decision, OMB accepted the recommendations of the interagency 
Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area Standards Review 
Committee (the Review Committee) as published in the February 12, 2009 
Federal Register.
    The SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION in this Notice provides background 
information on the standards (Section A), a brief synopsis of the 
public comments OMB received in response to the February 12, 2009 
Federal Register notice (Section B), and OMB's decisions on the 
recommendations of the Review Committee (Section C). The 2010 standards 
appear at the end of this Notice (Section D).
    The adoption of the 2010 standards will not affect the availability 
of Federal data for geographic areas such as States, counties, county 
subdivisions, and municipalities. For the near term, the U.S. Census 
Bureau will tabulate and publish data from the 2010 Census for all 
metropolitan, micropolitan, and combined statistical areas in existence 
at the time of the census.

DATES: Effective Date: This Notice is effective immediately. OMB plans 
to announce delineations of areas based on the 2010 standards and 2010 
Census data in 2013. Federal agencies should begin to use the new area 
delineations to tabulate and publish statistics when the delineations 
are announced.

ADDRESSES: Please send correspondence about OMB's decision to Katherine 
K. Wallman, Chief Statistician, Office of Management and Budget, Room 
10201, New Executive Office Building, Washington, DC 20503, telephone 
number (202) 395-3093, fax number (202) 395-7245, or E-mail 
2010MetroAreas@omb.eop.gov with the subject 2010 MetroAreas.
    Electronic Availability: This notice is available on the Internet 
from the OMB Web site at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/fedreg_default/.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Suzann Evinger, Office of Management 
and Budget, telephone number (202) 395-3093, fax number 202-395-7245.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Outline of Notice

A. Background and Review Process
B. Summary of Comments Received in Response to the February 12, 2009 
Federal Register Notice
C. OMB's Decisions Regarding Recommendations From the Metropolitan 
and Micropolitan Statistical Area Standards Review Committee 
Concerning Changes to the Standards for Defining Metropolitan and 
Micropolitan Statistical Areas
D. 2010 Standards for Delineating Metropolitan and Micropolitan 
Statistical Areas and Key Terms

A. Background and Review Process

1. Background

    The metropolitan and micropolitan statistical area program, under 
various names, has provided standard statistical area delineations for 
approximately 60 years. In the 1940s, it became clear that the value of 
metropolitan data produced by Federal agencies would be greatly 
enhanced if agencies used a single set of geographic delineations for 
the Nation's largest centers of population and activity. OMB's 
predecessor, the Bureau of the Budget, led the effort to develop what 
were then called ``standard metropolitan areas'' in time for their use 
in 1950 census publications. Since then, comparable data products for 
metropolitan areas have been available.
    The general concept of a metropolitan statistical area is that of 
an area containing a large population nucleus and adjacent communities 
that have a high degree of integration with that nucleus. The concept 
of a micropolitan statistical area closely parallels that of the 
metropolitan statistical area, but a micropolitan statistical area 
features a smaller nucleus. The purpose of these statistical areas is 
unchanged from when metropolitan areas were first delineated: The 
classification provides a nationally consistent set of delineations for 
collecting, tabulating, and publishing Federal statistics for 
geographic areas.
    OMB establishes and maintains these areas solely for statistical 
purposes. In reviewing and revising these areas, OMB does not take into 
account or attempt to anticipate any public or private sector 
nonstatistical uses that may be made of the delineations. These areas 
are not designed to serve as a general-purpose geographic framework 
applicable for nonstatistical activities or for use in program funding 
formulas.
    Furthermore, the Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area 
Standards do not produce an urban-rural classification, and confusion 
of these concepts can lead to difficulties in program implementation. 
Counties included in Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas 
and many other counties may contain both urban and rural territory and 
population. For instance, programs that seek to strengthen rural 
economies by focusing solely on counties located outside metropolitan 
statistical areas could ignore a predominantly rural county that is 
included in a metropolitan statistical area because a high percentage 
of the county's residents commute to urban centers for work. OMB urges 
agencies, organizations, and policy makers to review carefully the 
goals of nonstatistical programs and policies to ensure that 
appropriate geographic entities are used to determine eligibility for 
the allocation of Federal funds.

2. Review Process

    From the beginning of the program, OMB (or its predecessor) has 
reviewed the metropolitan (and now micropolitan) statistical area 
standards and, if warranted, revised them in the years preceding their 
application to new decennial census data. During the 1990s, OMB 
conducted a comprehensive review of the 1990 standards, leading to the 
development of the core based statistical areas (CBSAs) (metropolitan 
and micropolitan statistical areas) and combined statistical areas as 
contained in the 2000 standards (available at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/fedreg/metroareas122700.pdf). Periodic review of 
the standards is necessary to ensure their continued usefulness and 
relevance. The current review of the metropolitan and micropolitan 
statistical area standards is the sixth such review.
    In 2008, OMB charged the Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical 
Area Standards Review Committee with examining the 2000 metropolitan 
and micropolitan statistical area standards and providing to OMB 
recommendations for revising the standards that would be issued no 
later than December 2010. Agencies represented on the Review Committee 
included the Census Bureau (Chair), Bureau of Economic Analysis, Bureau 
of Labor Statistics, Bureau of Transportation Statistics, Economic 
Research Service/U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Center for 
Health

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Statistics, and ex officio, OMB. The Census Bureau provided research 
support to the committee.
    During the five years between the 2000 standards' implementation in 
2003 and the commencement of the Review Committee's deliberations in 
2008, OMB received very few inquiries from the public questioning the 
conceptual framework of the 2000 standards and the resulting area 
delineations. Therefore, the Review Committee concluded early in its 
deliberations that the 2000 standards worked well and were generally 
accepted. Thus, the Review Committee determined that it would not be 
necessary or appropriate to seek wide-ranging public comment on all 
aspects of the 2000 standards, particularly since a multiyear 
conceptual review, with several rounds of public comment, had been 
conducted prior to their adoption. Instead, the Review Committee 
decided to limit its review, and subsequent recommendations, to a small 
set of issues associated with the implementation of the 2000 standards.
    OMB published the Review Committee's recommendations for revisions 
to the 2000 standards in a February 12, 2009 Federal Register notice 
entitled ``Recommendations From the Metropolitan and Micropolitan 
Statistical Area Standards Review Committee to the Office of Management 
and Budget Concerning Changes to the 2000 Standards for Defining 
Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas'' (74 FR 7172-7177).

B. Summary of Comments Received in Response to the February 12, 2009 
Federal Register Notice

    The February 12, 2009 Federal Register notice requested comment on 
the Review Committee's recommendations to OMB concerning revisions to 
the 2000 Standards for Defining Metropolitan and Micropolitan 
Statistical Areas, namely its recommendations concerning (1) the 
qualification and titling of combined statistical areas; (2) the 
updating of metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas; and (3) 
the replacement of the word ``definition'' with the word 
``delineation.'' To help ensure the clarity of the 2010 recommended 
standards, OMB also requested comments on the wording of the standards.
    OMB received 40 comment letters in response to the February 12, 
2009 notice.
    Five commenters remarked on aspects of the Review Committee's 
recommendations for eliminating local opinion from the qualification of 
combined statistical areas and establishing a minimum employment 
interchange measure of 15 for the automatic qualification of combined 
statistical areas. Two commenters supported the elimination of local 
opinion in combined statistical area qualification, with one of the two 
expressing concern about setting the minimum employment interchange 
measure threshold at 15. Two other commenters expressed concern about 
both the potential consequences of eliminating local opinion and 
setting the automatic threshold at 15. One commenter supported setting 
the employment interchange measure at 15 for combining areas.
    Two commenters remarked on the proposed combined statistical area 
titling criteria. One commenter supported the committee's 
recommendation, while the other commenter wondered if eliminating local 
opinion would end potentially positive means of allowing individual 
areas to express their opinions.
    Five commenters remarked on aspects of the Review Committee's 
recommendations concerning the update of metropolitan and micropolitan 
statistical areas, including (1) the limiting of yearly updates as well 
as (2) the planned update in 2018. All five commenters who offered 
views on limiting yearly updates agreed with the Review Committee, as 
did all four who offered views on the planned update in 2018.
    Three commenters remarked on the Review Committee's recommendation 
to replace the term ``definition'' with ``delineation'': Two agreed, 
while one was indifferent. One of the three commenters wondered if it 
would take a long period for the new term to gain general acceptance.
    OMB has reviewed these comments, giving them careful consideration. 
In some cases, however, we have concluded that we could not adopt the 
suggestions made by commenters, particularly with respect to the 
qualification and titling of combined statistical areas, without 
undermining efforts to achieve a consistent, national approach designed 
to enhance the value of data produced by Federal agencies.
    In addition to the recommendations on which OMB requested comment, 
individuals also offered comments--not requested by OMB--on other 
aspects of the standards and the program. As indicated in the February 
12, 2009, Federal Register notice, the 2000 standards were the result 
of an extensive and comprehensive review. In conducting the recent 
review, the Review Committee concluded that the 2000 standards have 
worked well during the past decade, and recommended only some modest 
specific changes on which OMB sought public comments. The comments 
summarized below relate to aspects of the statistical area standards 
that were not open for public comment.
    One commenter suggested alternative means of titling metropolitan 
statistical areas with more than one county: (1) Titling based on the 
county seat of each county in the metropolitan statistical area; or (2) 
listing the most populous urban centers of each county. Another 
commenter suggested that titling a merged metropolitan statistical area 
be based on the names of the areas being merged. Two commenters asked 
OMB to consider shorter titles for areas.
    One commenter suggested that the central county criteria be 
modified so that section 2(b) is used in a much more limited fashion, 
only applying that criterion to those potential metropolitan and 
micropolitan statistical areas that would otherwise not contain a 
central county.
    One commenter suggested an alternative method of qualifying 
outlying counties that measures commuting to the central counties and 
does not require adjacency to the balance of the area. One commenter 
questioned the sole reliance on commuting for outlying county criteria, 
while two other commenters suggested that the outlying county criteria 
should be modified to follow the outlying county criteria in the 1990 
OMB standards, rather than the 2000 OMB standards. One commenter 
suggested the use of the employment interchange measure, as well as a 
measure of ``outleakage'' of consumer spending, to qualify counties to 
a county that contains a principal city.
    Thirteen commenters expressed concern about the current 
delineations of the Greensboro-High Point, Winston-Salem, and 
Burlington, North Carolina metropolitan statistical areas, and 
suggested that OMB find ways to merge or otherwise bring together the 
three individual areas--and in the case of a few commenters, additional 
territory--into a single metropolitan statistical area.
    Four commenters expressed concerns about the current delineations 
of selected CBSAs in Michigan. All four commenters suggested a 
reconfiguration of the Grand Rapids area, with two of the four also 
questioning the delineation of selected other areas in the State.
    One commenter suggested that the term ``metropolitan statistical 
area'' only apply to those areas that do not belong to combined 
statistical areas. This commenter further suggested that

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components of combined statistical areas should be designated using 
some other category name.
    One commenter suggested that OMB consider separate coding sequences 
for metropolitan statistical areas and for micropolitan statistical 
areas, and that OMB consider using headings such as ``Metropolitan 
CBSAs'' and ``Micropolitan CBSAs.'' Also, one commenter asked OMB to 
consider maintaining the same statistical area codes for areas 
delineated in the update scheduled for 2018 as will have been 
established in the review scheduled for 2013, including cases where 
titles have changed but where boundaries have not changed. Furthermore, 
the commenter also suggested that OMB consider an interagency process 
to investigate the feasibility of creating classifications of territory 
within metropolitan statistical areas.
    Some out-of-scope comments focused on the use of the statistical 
areas, including the presentation of data. One commenter asked OMB to 
consider researching the uses of statistical areas. The commenter also 
asked OMB to mandate that data provided for metropolitan and 
micropolitan statistical areas be displayed with data for the combined 
statistical area associated with those metropolitan or micropolitan 
statistical area components, and that data displayed at the 
metropolitan division level be displayed with data for the metropolitan 
statistical area of which the metropolitan division is a component. In 
addition, five commenters requested that OMB consider elimination of 
the prohibition against commingling in ranking combined statistical 
areas, on the one hand, and metropolitan statistical areas that do not 
belong to combined statistical areas, on the other hand.
    One commenter asked for the inclusion of local opinion in the 
metropolitan and micropolitan statistical area qualification process, 
and another requested using local opinion in metropolitan division 
qualification. Another commenter more generally advocated some use of 
local opinion in the standards.
    Sixteen commenters offered suggestions on an unidentified Federal 
program that appears to be unrelated to the metropolitan and 
micropolitan statistical areas program.
    We have reviewed the out-of-scope comments and concluded that we 
could not accept suggestions that would alter the underlying concepts 
and framework of the 2000 standards, adhering instead to a more focused 
update. However, OMB, in consultation with the Census Bureau and the 
Review Committee, may give further consideration to the out-of-scope 
comments relating to the presentation of data when it updates the 
guidance on uses of the areas in its statistical areas bulletin.

C. OMB's Decisions Regarding Recommendations From the Metropolitan and 
Micropolitan Statistical Area Standards Review Committee Concerning 
Changes to the Standards for Defining Metropolitan and Micropolitan 
Statistical Areas

    This section of the Notice provides information on the decisions 
OMB has made on the Review Committee's recommendations. In arriving at 
these decisions, we considered the public comment on the Review 
Committee's recommendations published in the Federal Register on 
February 12, 2009. OMB also benefited from the deliberations of the 
Review Committee as well as the research support provided by Census 
Bureau staff. We have relied upon and very much appreciate the 
technical and subject-matter expertise, insight, and dedication of the 
Review Committee members and the Census Bureau staff.
    OMB presents below its decisions on the Review Committee's specific 
recommendations:

1. Recommendations Concerning Combined Statistical Areas

    OMB accepts the Review Committee's recommendation to eliminate the 
use of local opinion in the qualification of combinations with 
employment interchange measures between 15 and 25. Adjacent core based 
statistical areas (CBSAs) should automatically qualify for combination 
if they possess an employment interchange measure of 15 or higher. OMB 
also accepts the recommendation to eliminate the use of local opinion 
in combined statistical area titling; each combined statistical area 
should be titled using the names of the two principal cities with the 
largest populations in the combined statistical area, as well as the 
name of the third-largest principal city, if present.
    The 2000 standards provided for combined statistical areas to 
recognize ties between contiguous metropolitan and/or micropolitan 
statistical areas that are less intense than those captured by mergers, 
but still significant. (Mergers occur when adjacent CBSAs become a 
single CBSA because the central county or counties (as a group) of one 
CBSA qualify as outlying to the central county or counties (as a group) 
of the other CBSA.) These combinations were based on the employment 
interchange measure between two CBSAs, defined as the sum of the 
percentage of commuting from the smaller area to the larger area and 
the percentage of employment in the smaller area accounted for by 
workers residing in the larger area.
    In reviewing the 2000 standards, OMB agrees with the Review 
Committee that combined statistical areas can serve as an important 
geographic tool for the Federal statistical data community. Under the 
current system--in which adjacent metropolitan and/or micropolitan 
statistical areas combine automatically if they have an employment 
interchange measure of 25 or more, while areas with an interchange 
measure of less than 25 but at least 15 qualify with the support of 
local opinion--the universe of combined statistical areas is 
heterogeneous and incomplete. This calls into question the 
comparability of the areas. Applying only statistical rules when 
delineating areas--the means by which the other statistical areas 
delineated by OMB currently qualify--minimizes ambiguity and maximizes 
the replicability, transparency, and integrity of the process. OMB 
agrees with the committee on applying only statistical rules, 
automatically combining all areas with the minimum employment 
interchange measure of 15.
    Under the 2000 standards, local opinion also was used for 
determining titles for combined statistical areas. OMB agrees with the 
committee that just as the qualification of combined statistical areas 
should be based on the application of statistical rules, so too should 
combined statistical area titling. OMB agrees with the committee's 
recommendation for the elimination of local opinion from combined 
statistical area titling and instead titling combined statistical areas 
in essentially the same manner as their component metropolitan and or 
micropolitan statistical areas: The title of a combined statistical 
area should be based on the names of the two principal cities with the 
largest populations in the combination, as well as the name of the 
third-largest principal city, if present. To avoid a source of 
potential confusion, however, OMB also agrees with the committee's 
recommendation for dropping the name of the third-most-populous 
principal city from the title of a combined statistical area if the 
combined statistical area title duplicates that of one of its component 
CBSAs.

2. Recommendations Concerning Postcensal Updates

    OMB accepts the Review Committee's recommendation that OMB: (1) 
Limit its yearly updates after the initial delineation based on the 
2010 standards

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to the identification of new metropolitan and micropolitan statistical 
areas (and reflect certain changes to principal cities such as names 
and legal status) and (2) conduct a broader update in 2018 based on 
those aspects of delineation that can be performed using Census Bureau 
Population Estimates Program total population estimates as well as the 
2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-year commuting and employment 
estimates.
    For some purposes, frequent updates of the areas are desirable, but 
for other purposes stability of the inventory of areas has advantages.
    OMB notes that the committee examined the criteria for statistical 
area updates in the 2000 standards as well as the application of those 
criteria. Annual postcensal updates of statistical areas since 2003 
have been extensive and have included: (1) Qualification of new 
micropolitan statistical areas; (2) qualification of new metropolitan 
statistical areas; (3) qualification of new and expanded combined 
statistical areas, (4) qualification of new principal cities; (5) 
deletion of principal cities; and (6) changes in the titles of 
metropolitan statistical areas, micropolitan statistical areas, and 
metropolitan divisions, based on the addition and/or deletion of 
principal cities as well as changes in the relative population size 
rankings of principal cities.\1\
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    \1\ The 2000 standards also included criteria for updating areas 
in 2008 based on American Community Survey 5-year commuting and 
employment estimates. Given a subsequent change in the American 
Community Survey production and release schedule, that 2008 update 
could not be implemented.
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    OMB agrees with the Review Committee's observation that aspects of 
yearly updates can present potential difficulties to producers and 
users of metropolitan and micropolitan statistical area data, including 
the potentially considerable workload that yearly postcensal update 
titling and coding changes can pose for maintaining large databases. 
OMB supports a more limited yearly update, identifying only new 
metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas.\2\ (The identification 
of a new metropolitan or micropolitan statistical area can lead to the 
creation of a new combined statistical area or the expansion of an 
existing combined statistical area.) OMB would continue to reflect 
changes to principal cities based on changes in their names and legal 
status. For example, if a principal city disincorporates or changes its 
name, that would be reflected in the yearly update of the inventory of 
principal cities, CBSA titles, and codes.
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    \2\ A metropolitan statistical area that qualifies under the 
yearly update due to a special census or population estimate will 
not contain an urbanized area as delineated by the Census Bureau, 
unless that special census generates a new urbanized area. Also, the 
Census Bureau's Population Estimates Program produces and 
disseminates the official total population estimates of cities that 
are used in the update process.
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    OMB agrees with the Review Committee's recommendation for a more 
comprehensive update of metropolitan and micropolitan and related 
statistical areas in 2018 based on those parts of delineation that can 
be updated using Census Bureau Population Estimates Program total 
population estimates and the 2011-2015 American Community Survey 5-year 
commuting and employment estimates. The urbanized areas and urban 
clusters used in the 2018 update will be those delineated with 2010 
Census data, plus any urban areas delineated later through special 
censuses. The central counties of CBSAs identified on the basis of a 
2010 Census population count, or on the basis of population estimates 
or a special census count in the case of postcensally delineated areas, 
would constitute the central counties for purposes of this set of area 
delineations.

3. Recommendation Concerning the Use of the Word ``Definition''

    OMB accepts the Review Committee's recommendation that OMB replace 
the word ``definition'' with the word ``delineation'' in the proposed 
2010 standards.
    During much of the history of the metropolitan and micropolitan 
statistical area program, the term ``definition'' has been used to 
refer to the boundaries or geographic makeup of an area (e.g., the 
definition of the Altoona, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area). While the 
program's use of the term has been careful and consistent, it is not 
intuitive for those first encountering the program.
    OMB agrees with the committee that the program's use of the term 
``definition'' occasionally has caused misunderstandings and accepts 
the committee's recommendation to replace ``definition'' with 
``delineation'' to reference the geographic boundaries of the 
statistical areas.

D. 2010 Standards for Delineating Metropolitan and Micropolitan 
Statistical Areas and Key Terms

    The Office of Management and Budget will use these standards to 
delineate Core Based Statistical Areas (CBSAs) beginning in 2013.
    A CBSA is a geographic entity associated with at least one core of 
10,000 or more population, plus adjacent territory that has a high 
degree of social and economic integration with the core as measured by 
commuting ties. The standards designate and delineate two categories of 
CBSAs: Metropolitan Statistical Areas and Micropolitan Statistical 
Areas.
    The purpose of the Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area 
standards is to provide nationally consistent delineations for 
collecting, tabulating, and publishing Federal statistics for a set of 
geographic areas. The Office of Management and Budget establishes and 
maintains these areas solely for statistical purposes.
    Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas are not designed as 
a general-purpose geographic framework for nonstatistical activities or 
for use in program funding formulas. The CBSA classification is not an 
urban-rural classification; Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical 
Areas and many counties outside CBSAs contain both urban and rural 
populations.
    CBSAs consist of counties and equivalent entities throughout the 
United States and Puerto Rico. In view of the importance of cities and 
towns in New England, a set of geographic areas similar in concept to 
the county-based CBSAs also will be delineated for that region using 
cities and towns. These New England City and Town Areas (NECTAs) are 
intended for use with statistical data, whenever feasible and 
appropriate, for New England. Data providers and users desiring areas 
delineated using a nationally consistent geographic building block 
should use the county-based CBSAs in New England.
    The following criteria apply to both the nationwide county-based 
CBSAs and to NECTAs, with the exceptions of Sections 7 and 9 in which 
separate criteria are applied when identifying and titling divisions 
within NECTAs that contain at least one core of 2.5 million or more 
population. Wherever the word ``county'' or ``counties'' appears in the 
following criteria (except in Sections 7 and 9), the words ``city and 
town'' or ``cities and towns'' should be substituted, as appropriate, 
when delineating NECTAs. Commuting and employment estimates are derived 
from the Census Bureau's American Community Survey.

Section 1. Population Size Requirements for Qualification of Core Based 
Statistical Areas

    Each CBSA must have a Census Bureau delineated urbanized area of at 
least 50,000 population or a Census Bureau delineated urban cluster of 
at least 10,000 population. (Urbanized

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areas and urban clusters are collectively referred to as ``urban 
areas.'')

Section 2. Central Counties

    The central county or counties of a CBSA are those counties that:
    (a) Have at least 50 percent of their population in urban areas of 
at least 10,000 population; or
    (b) Have within their boundaries a population of at least 5,000 
located in a single urban area of at least 10,000 population.
    A central county is associated with the urbanized area or urban 
cluster that accounts for the largest portion of the county's 
population. The central counties associated with a particular urbanized 
area or urban cluster are grouped to form a single cluster of central 
counties for purposes of measuring commuting to and from potentially 
qualifying outlying counties.

Section 3. Outlying Counties

    A county qualifies as an outlying county of a CBSA if it meets the 
following commuting requirements:
    (a) At least 25 percent of the workers living in the county work in 
the central county or counties of the CBSA; or
    (b) At least 25 percent of the employment in the county is 
accounted for by workers who reside in the central county or counties 
of the CBSA.
    A county may be included in only one CBSA. If a county qualifies as 
a central county of one CBSA and as outlying in another, it falls 
within the CBSA in which it is a central county. A county that 
qualifies as outlying to multiple CBSAs falls within the CBSA with 
which it has the strongest commuting tie, as measured by either 3(a) or 
3(b) above. The counties included in a CBSA must be contiguous; if a 
county is not contiguous with other counties in the CBSA, it will not 
fall within the CBSA.

Section 4. Merging of Adjacent Core Based Statistical Areas

    Two adjacent CBSAs will merge to form one CBSA if the central 
county or counties (as a group) of one CBSA qualify as outlying to the 
central county or counties (as a group) of the other CBSA using the 
measures and thresholds stated in 3(a) and 3(b) above.

Section 5. Identification of Principal Cities

    The Principal City (or Cities) of a CBSA will include:
    (a) The largest incorporated place with a 2010 Census population of 
at least 10,000 in the CBSA or, if no incorporated place of at least 
10,000 population is present in the CBSA, the largest incorporated 
place or census designated place in the CBSA; and
    (b) Any additional incorporated place or census designated place 
with a 2010 Census population of at least 250,000 or in which 100,000 
or more persons work; and
    (c) Any additional incorporated place or census designated place 
with a 2010 Census population of at least 50,000, but less than 
250,000, and in which the number of workers working in the place meets 
or exceeds the number of workers living in the place; and
    (d) Any additional incorporated place or census designated place 
with a 2010 Census population of at least 10,000, but less than 50,000, 
and at least one-third the population size of the largest place, and in 
which the number of workers working in the place meets or exceeds the 
number of workers living in the place.

Section 6. Categories and Terminology

    A CBSA is categorized based on the population of the largest urban 
area (urbanized area or urban cluster) within the CBSA. Categories of 
CBSAs are: Metropolitan Statistical Areas, based on urbanized areas of 
50,000 or more population, and Micropolitan Statistical Areas, based on 
urban clusters of at least 10,000 population but less than 50,000 
population. Counties that do not fall within CBSAs will represent 
``Outside Core Based Statistical Areas.''
    A NECTA is categorized in a manner similar to a CBSA and is 
referred to as a Metropolitan NECTA or a Micropolitan NECTA.

Section 7. Divisions of Metropolitan Statistical Areas and New England 
City and Town Areas

    (a) A Metropolitan Statistical Area containing a single urbanized 
area with a population of at least 2.5 million may be subdivided to 
form smaller groupings of counties referred to as Metropolitan 
Divisions. A county qualifies as a ``main county'' of a Metropolitan 
Division if 65 percent or more of workers living in the county also 
work within the county and the ratio of the number of workers working 
in the county to the number of workers living in the county is at least 
.75. A county qualifies as a ``secondary county'' if 50 percent or 
more, but less than 65 percent, of workers living in the county also 
work within the county and the ratio of the number of workers working 
in the county to the number of workers living in the county is at least 
75.
    A main county automatically serves as the basis for a Metropolitan 
Division. For a secondary county to qualify as the basis for forming a 
Metropolitan Division, it must join with either a contiguous secondary 
county or a contiguous main county with which it has the highest 
employment interchange measure of 15 or more. After all main counties 
and secondary counties are identified and grouped (if appropriate), 
each additional county that already has qualified for inclusion in the 
Metropolitan Statistical Area falls within the Metropolitan Division 
associated with the main/secondary county or counties with which the 
county at issue has the highest employment interchange measure. 
Counties in a Metropolitan Division must be contiguous.
    (b) A NECTA containing a single urbanized area with a population of 
at least 2.5 million may be subdivided to form smaller groupings of 
cities and towns referred to as NECTA Divisions. A city or town will be 
a ``main city or town'' of a NECTA Division if it has a population of 
50,000 or more and its highest rate of out-commuting to any other city 
or town is less than 20 percent.
    After all main cities and towns have been identified, each 
remaining city and town in the NECTA will fall within the NECTA 
Division associated with the city or town with which the one at issue 
has the highest employment interchange measure. Each NECTA Division 
must contain a total population of 100,000 or more. Cities and towns 
first assigned to areas with populations less than 100,000 will be 
assigned to the qualifying NECTA Division associated with the city or 
town with which the one at issue has the highest employment interchange 
measure. Cities and towns within a NECTA Division must be contiguous.

Section 8. Combining Adjacent Core Based Statistical Areas

    (a) Any two adjacent CBSAs will form a Combined Statistical Area if 
the employment interchange measure between the two areas is at least 
15.
    (b) The CBSAs thus combined will also continue to be recognized as 
individual CBSAs within the Combined Statistical Area.

Section 9. Titles of Core Based Statistical Areas, Metropolitan 
Divisions, New England City and Town Divisions, and Combined 
Statistical Areas

    (a) The title of a CBSA or NECTA will include the name of its 
Principal City with the largest 2010 Census population. If there are 
multiple Principal Cities, the names of the second-largest and (if 
present) third-largest Principal Cities will appear in the title in 
order of descending population size. If the Principal City

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with the largest 2010 Census population is a census designated place, 
the name of the largest incorporated place of at least 10,000 
population that also is a Principal City will appear first in the title 
followed by the name of the census designated place. If the Principal 
City with the largest 2010 Census population is a census designated 
place, and there is no incorporated place of at least 10,000 population 
that also is a Principal City, the name of that census designated place 
Principal City will appear first in the title.
    (b) The title of a Metropolitan Division will include the name of 
the Principal City with the largest 2010 Census population located in 
the Metropolitan Division. If there are multiple Principal Cities, the 
names of the second-largest and (if present) third-largest Principal 
Cities will appear in the title in order of descending population size. 
If there are no Principal Cities located in the Metropolitan Division, 
the title of the Metropolitan Division will use the names of up to 
three counties in order of descending 2010 Census population size.
    (c) The title of a NECTA Division will include the name of the 
Principal City with the largest 2010 Census population located in the 
NECTA Division. If there are multiple Principal Cities, the names of 
the second-largest and (if present) third-largest Principal Cities will 
appear in the title in order of descending population size. If there 
are no Principal Cities located in the NECTA Division, the title of the 
NECTA Division will use the names of up to three cities or towns in 
descending 2010 Census population size.
    (d) The title of a Combined Statistical Area will include the names 
of the two largest Principal Cities in the combination and the name of 
the third-largest Principal City, if present. If the Combined 
Statistical Area title duplicates that of one of its component CBSAs, 
the name of the third-most-populous Principal City will be dropped from 
the title of the Combined Statistical Area.
    (e) Titles also will include the names of any State in which the 
area is located.

Section 10. Updating Schedule

    (a) The Office of Management and Budget will delineate CBSAs in 
2013 based on 2010 Census data and 2006-2010 American Community Survey 
5-year estimates.
    (b) In subsequent years, the Office of Management and Budget will 
designate a new Metropolitan Statistical Area if:
    (1) A city that is outside any existing CBSA has a Census Bureau 
special census count of 10,000 to 49,999 population, or a population 
estimate of 10,000 to 49,999 for two consecutive years from the Census 
Bureau's Population Estimates Program, or
    (2) A Census Bureau special census results in the delineation of an 
urban cluster of 10,000 to 49,999 population that is outside of any 
existing CBSA.
    (c) Also in subsequent years, the Office of Management and Budget 
will designate a new Metropolitan Statistical Area if:
    (1) A city that is outside any existing Metropolitan Statistical 
Area has a Census Bureau special census count of 50,000 or more 
population, or a population estimate of 50,000 or more for two 
consecutive years from the Census Bureau's Population Estimates 
Program, or
    (2) A Census Bureau special census results in the delineation of a 
new urbanized area of 50,000 population or more that is outside of any 
existing Metropolitan Statistical Area.
    (d) Outlying counties of CBSAs that qualify after the first 
delineation (in 2013) will qualify, according to the criteria in 
Section 3 above, on the basis of American Community Survey 5-year 
commuting estimates.
    (e) The Office of Management and Budget will review the 
delineations of all existing CBSAs and related statistical areas in 
2018 using 2011-2015 5-year commuting and employment estimates from the 
Census Bureau's American Community Survey. The urbanized areas and 
urban clusters used in these delineations will be those based on 2010 
Census data or subsequent special censuses for which urban areas are 
created. The central counties of CBSAs identified on the basis of a 
2010 Census population count, or on the basis of population estimates 
from the Census Bureau's Population Estimates Program or a special 
census count in the case of postcensally delineated areas, will 
constitute the central counties for purposes of the these area 
delineations. New CBSAs will be designated in 2018 on the basis of 
Census Bureau special census counts or population estimates as 
described above in Sections 10(b) and 10(c); outlying county 
qualification will be based on 5-year commuting estimates from the 
American Community Survey.
    (f) Other aspects of the Metropolitan and Metropolitan Statistical 
Area and related statistical area delineations are not subject to 
change between decennial censuses.

Section 11. Definitions of Key Terms

    Census designated place--A statistical geographic entity that is 
analogous to an incorporated place, delineated for the decennial 
census, consisting of a locally recognized, unincorporated 
concentration of population that is identified by name.
    Central county--The county or counties of a Core Based Statistical 
Area containing a substantial portion of an urbanized area or urban 
cluster or both, and to and from which commuting is measured to 
determine qualification of outlying counties.
    Combined Statistical Area--A geographic entity consisting of two or 
more adjacent Core Based Statistical Areas with employment interchange 
measures of at least 15.
    Core--A densely settled concentration of population, comprising 
either an urbanized area (of 50,000 or more population) or an urban 
cluster (of 10,000 to 49,999 population) delineated by the Census 
Bureau, around which a Core Based Statistical Area is delineated.
    Core Based Statistical Area (CBSA)--A statistical geographic entity 
consisting of the county or counties associated with at least one core 
(urbanized area or urban cluster) of at least 10,000 population, plus 
adjacent counties having a high degree of social and economic 
integration with the core as measured through commuting ties with the 
counties containing the core. Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical 
Areas are the two categories of Core Based Statistical Areas.
    Delineation--The establishment of the boundary of a statistical 
area, or the boundary that results.
    Employment interchange measure--A measure of ties between two 
adjacent entities. The employment interchange measure is the sum of the 
percentage of workers living in the smaller entity who work in the 
larger entity and the percentage of employment in the smaller entity 
that is accounted for by workers who reside in the larger entity.
    Geographic building block--The geographic unit, such as a county, 
that constitutes the basic geographic component of a statistical area.
    Main city or town--A city or town that acts as an employment center 
within a New England City and Town Area that has a core with a 
population of at least 2.5 million. A main city or town serves as the 
basis for delineating a New England City and Town Area Division.
    Main county--A county that acts as an employment center within a 
Core Based Statistical Area that has a core with a population of at 
least 2.5 million. A main county serves as the basis for delineating a 
Metropolitan Division.
    Metropolitan Division--A county or group of counties within a Core 
Based Statistical Area that contains an

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urbanized area with a population of at least 2.5 million. A 
Metropolitan Division consists of one or more main/secondary counties 
that represent an employment center or centers, plus adjacent counties 
associated with the main/secondary county or counties through commuting 
ties.
    Metropolitan Statistical Area--A Core Based Statistical Area 
associated with at least one urbanized area that has a population of at 
least 50,000. The Metropolitan Statistical Area comprises the central 
county or counties containing the core, plus adjacent outlying counties 
having a high degree of social and economic integration with the 
central county or counties as measured through commuting.
    Micropolitan Statistical Area--A Core Based Statistical Area 
associated with at least one urban cluster that has a population of at 
least 10,000, but less than 50,000. The Micropolitan Statistical Area 
comprises the central county or counties containing the core, plus 
adjacent outlying counties having a high degree of social and economic 
integration with the central county or counties as measured through 
commuting.
    New England City and Town Area (NECTA)--A statistical geographic 
entity that is delineated using cities and towns as building blocks and 
that is conceptually similar to the Core Based Statistical Areas in New 
England (which are delineated using counties as building blocks).
    New England City and Town Area (NECTA) Division--A city or town or 
group of cities and towns within a NECTA that contains an urbanized 
area with a population of at least 2.5 million. A NECTA Division 
consists of a main city or town that represents an employment center, 
plus adjacent cities and towns associated with the main city or town, 
or with other cities and towns that are in turn associated with the 
main city or town, through commuting ties.
    Outlying county--A county that qualifies for inclusion in a Core 
Based Statistical Area on the basis of commuting ties with the Core 
Based Statistical Area's central county or counties.
    Outside Core Based Statistical Areas--Counties that do not qualify 
for inclusion in a Core Based Statistical Area.
    Principal City--The largest city of a Core Based Statistical Area, 
plus additional cities that meet specified statistical criteria.
    Secondary county--A county that acts as an employment center in 
combination with a main county or another secondary county within a 
Core Based Statistical Area that has a core with a population of at 
least 2.5 million. A secondary county may serve as the basis for 
delineating a Metropolitan Division, but only when combined with a main 
county or another secondary county.
    Urban area--The term used by the Census Bureau to refer 
collectively to urbanized areas and urban clusters.
    Urban cluster--A statistical geographic entity delineated by the 
Census Bureau, consisting of densely settled census tracts and blocks 
and adjacent densely settled territory that together contain at least 
2,500 people. For purposes of delineating Core Based Statistical Areas, 
only those urban clusters of 10,000 more population are considered.
    Urbanized area--A statistical geographic entity delineated by the 
Census Bureau, consisting of densely settled census tracts and blocks 
and adjacent densely settled territory that together contain at least 
50,000 people.

Cass R. Sunstein,
Administrator, Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs.
[FR Doc. 2010-15605 Filed 6-25-10; 8:45 am]
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