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Scientific Data Documentation
FIPS Codes - CMSA, PMSA, SMSA 1980-1990


           APDU Newsletter
           Volume 17, No. 1
           January/February 1993

 MSA Redefinitions Cause A Stir in the Northeast

     The redefinitions of the New York and Boston metropolitan areas
 announced by the Office of Management and Budget on December 31,1992, have
 caused a stir among public officials, planning departments, and cial
 services agencies in the northeastern part of the United States.

     The primary concern is the funding changes that many think will occur as
 the result of higher wage and cost of living indicies. Higher median income
 figures would impact the eligibility of some people for needs-assessed
 programs like Medicare and housing assistance; some of those who presently
 quality may find themselves ineligible.

     But while some would suffer under the redefinitions, others would fare
 better because funding would shift from one community to another. The New
 York Times reported on Feburary 31,1993 ("Officials Say Redrawn Census Area
 Will Rearrange Federal Funcis") that hospitals in New York City could lose
 $121 million a year under the new defintions, but the hospitals in the New
 Jersey and Pennsylvania counties in the New York metropolitan area could gain
 about $150 million.

     The Office of Management and Budget began defining metropolitan areas in
 1950 in order to standardize federal statistical reporting activities. The
 OMB definition is based on three criteria: population, density, and
 commuting. A metropolitan area must have a central core of a certain
 population sir:e and a densely populated adjacent area with a certain
 percentage of the area's residents commuting into the city for employmen
 Attendant to this is the expectation of a high degree of social and economic
 integration between the city and the adjacent area.

     Some people question whether the expanded New York and Boston
 metropolitan areas mesh with this concept. Over the last 10 years business
 relocations have changed commuting patterns and suburbs have become more self
 contained. In some cases the social and economic relationship with the
 city is minimal,ifit exists at all. For instance, does Ocean County, NJ, have
 a higher degree of social and economic interaction with New York City than,
 say, Fairfield County, CT - which was not included in the metropolitan area?

     The Office of Management and Budget notified Congressional delegates in
 October that changes in definitions would be forthcoming. Planners and
 organizations who will have to deal with the impact of the redefintions say
 this information was not passed along to them, perhapsbecause main election
 activities at that time. The Office of Management and Budget has agreed to
 open a comment period for the New York and Boston areas that will run until
 sometime in March. Congressional delegates in the New York area were notified
 by letter on January 31 that they had 45 days to respond with comments. The
 Boston delegations will receive a similar letter, although it had not been
 mailed as of February 1.

     Individuals who have cornrnents about these definitions should address
 them to Maria Gonaalez, Office of Management and Budget, Washington, DC 20503
 their legislators. It is important that your legislators know now, and for
 future reference, how such redefinitions will affect their constituents.
 APDU would like to receive copies of letters that members write on the
 positive or negative impacts of the redefinitions.

     You can obtain a copy of Bulletin No. 93-05 from the APDU office at
 (609) 258-6025, or the Office of Management and Budget Publications Office
 at (202)395-7332. Contact the National Technical Information Service at
 (703) 487-4650 for a copy of the complete list of Metro politan Areas (which
 include Metropolitan Statistical Areas) as of December 31,1992.

 About MSAs...

  Why?   So that all federal agencies use the same geographic definitions to
         collect, tabulate, and report data for metropolitan areas.
  How?   The Office of Management and Budget establishes the geographic
         definition of each metropolitan area based on comments received
         directly from the public, from a public hearing, and from the
         interagency Federal Executive Committee on Metropolitan Areas.
         The basis is a concept developed in 1950.
  When?  Standards for defining metropolitan areas are reviewed after each
         decennial census. Metropolitan area defininons are issued based on
         the standards. Definitions are updated each June, based on Census
         Bureau thtercensal population estimates or special census population

 Metropolitan Areas Timeline

 1950  Standard Metropolitan Area (SMA) defined by Bureau of the Budget (later
       named Office of Management and Budget)
        -Core city/urban area population of 50,000+
        -Strong commuting ties
        -Counties were basic building blocks (cities and towns in New England)
        -172 SMAs designated
        -Name change to Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area in 1959
 1983  New list of Metropolitan Statistical Areas issued ("Standard" is
       dropped from title);  breakouts for:
        -Metropolitan Statistical Area
             -City/urbanized place of 50,000+
             -Largest city has less than 50,000 people, then MSA must
              have at least 100,000
             -Strong commuting ties
             -257 MSAs designated
        -Primary Metropolitan Statistical Area
             -Contiguous MSAs of 1,000,000+ people
        -Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area
             -Combinations of PMSAs that form a larger, interrelated network
 1993  MSA, FMSA, CMSA standards basicalty
       remain the same, some changes in urban
       density requirements*
        -253 MSAs designated

 Metropolitan Areas are categorized by population size

     Level A    MSAs of 1,000,000 or more
     Level B    MSAs of 250,000 to 999,999
     Level C    MSAs of 100,000 to 249,999
     Level D    MSAs of less than 100,000

 *Contact APDU (609-258-6025) for a copy of OMB's Revised Standards for
 Defining Metropolitan Areas in the 1990s, issued in the Federal Register of
 March 30, 1990.

 * Reprinted with permission of the Association of Public Data Users (APDU)
   For membership information contact:

                             Susan Anderson
                             (609) 258-6025 or
                             (609) 258-6052

      00 ... not a CMSA
      07-91 ... code range (not inclusive)

 3-6  1990 FIPS PMSA/MSA (SMSA's)
      0040-9340 ... code range (not inclusive)

      1 ... metropolitan county
      2 ... nonmetropolitan county



 18-20  1990 NCHS PMSA/MSA (SMSA's)

       000 ... nonmetropolitan county
       001-320 ... code range

 21-24   1980 FIPS SMSA

 25      1980 MET/NOT

 26-28   1980


 74-128   CMSA NAME -- 55 POSITIONS

 129-178  1990 PMSA/MSA NAME --  50 POSITIONS

 179-228  1980 SMSA NAME -- 50 POSITIONS

This page last reviewed: Thursday, January 28, 2016
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