All About Richland

What’s In A Name? For Mansfield, Quite A Bit

14 Jul , 2021  

By 1812Blockhouse

“A rose by rose by any other name would smell as sweet,” Shakespeare penned. For cities and counties of a certain size, however, the names which they are called can matter a great deal.

This is why Mansfield officials breathed a sigh of relief yesterday when the Office of Management and Budget announced that a possible revised definition would mean that Mansfield would no longer constitute a metropolitan statistical area was rejected.

Such an area is a location of population density that functions as a regional marketplace. The appellation is tied to such things as federal funding and project eligibility.

Earlier this year, The Office of Management and Budget in Washington, D.C. had announced a proposed rule change that would have moved the Metropolitan Statistical Area threshold population, threatening Mansfield’s ability to retain that designation.

The proposal promoted quick and loud bipartisan opposition in Congress. In this case, intense lobbying worked.

On Monday, the Office of Management and Budget issued the following press release:

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) today announced the 2020 Standards for Delineating Core Based Statistical Areas. The standards will supersede the 2010 standards with modest revisions.

Core-based statistical area standards are intended for statistical purposes only to help ensure Federal agencies that classify statistics, such as unemployment numbers or GDP levels, by geographic area do so consistently across government. Every ten years, as part of a long-running process, OMB considers updates to the standards to ensure their continued usefulness and relevance for statistical agencies. Updates to the standards follow a long-running process: A technical advisory committee of experts provides recommendations, OMB solicits public notice and comment on proposed changes, OMB deliberates on the recommendations and public comments, and finally OMB publishes notification of its final decisions.

On January 19, 2021, OMB published a Federal Register Notice soliciting public comment on recommendations for the 2020 update from a technical advisory committee of interagency experts, known as Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Area Standards Review Committee. Following a public comment period, the Committee submitted a revised recommendation to leave the current Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA) core population threshold in place.

Consistent with the Standards Review Committee’s revised recommendation, OMB’s 2020 Standards will maintain the MSA threshold of 50,000. Recognizing the committee’s concern that MSA thresholds have not kept pace with population growth, OMB will work with the Standards Review Committee to conduct research and stakeholder outreach to inform the 2030 standards update.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

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