WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- The Federal Office of Management and Budget now says the reason the Census Bureau is considering moving Brunswick County into the Myrtle Beach Metropolitan Statistical Area is based on algorithms.
An OMB official sent this explanation after the office refused to offer any answers and we posted a press office workers email address offering others to try.
She said, "The Revised Delineations of Metropolitan Statistical Areas, Micropolitan Statistical Areas, and Combined Statistical Areas, and Guidance on Uses of the Delineations of these areas can be found at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/bulletins/2013/b-13-01.... For your reference, The recently-released 2013 metro and micro area delineations are based on the application of the 2010 OMB standards, available at http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/assets/fedreg_2010/062... to Census Bureau data."
"The first step in the delineation process is to identify the central counties of an area, the counties associated with the urban core. A county that contains at least 5,000 people in an urban area with at least 10,000 total population qualifies as a central county. If a county contains multiple urban areas, the county is associated with the urban area that accounts for the largest portion of that county's population. 20,279 people in Brunswick County live in the Myrtle Beach--Socastee, SC--NC Urbanized Area; 19,636 people in the county live in the Wilmington, NC Urbanized Area; and 11,226 people in the county live in the Oak Island, NC Urban Cluster."
"Under the 2010 standards, therefore, Brunswick County qualifies to be a central county because it has at least 5,000 people in an urban area of 10,000 or more total population. Furthermore, the urban area that accounts for the largest portion of Brunswick County's population is the Myrtle Beach--Socastee, SC--NC Urbanized Area, the core of the Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach, SC-NC Metropolitan Statistical Area. In other words, Brunswick County is associated with the Myrtle Beach urban core, and therefore is part of the Myrtle Beach metro area."
"OMB delineates metropolitan and micropolitan statistical areas to provide a nationally consistent set of areas for the collection, tabulation, and publication of Federal statistics. Consistent with longstanding practice, the delineations that were issued on February 28, 2013, were based on the application to statistical data of previously-established standards that themselves were the product of an open and transparent process that included requests for public comment [see, for example, Federal Register 74:7172-7177]. The delineations published on February 28, 2013, are final determinations for the applicable period beginning with their issuance and extending through 2018, except as they may be modestly updated annually in circumstances specified by the standards."
Many in Wilmington, New Hanover County and Brunswick County feel moving Brunswick into the Myrtle Beach MSA will hurt recruiting efforts.
Politicians from all those areas, including Rep. Mike McIntyre and Sen. Kay Hagan have either signed or approved resolutions asking OMB and the census not to make the move.