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BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — The fight over the federal government lumping Brunswick County into the Myrtle Beach metro area is apparently not over.

Sen. Richard Burr (R-NC) has introduced legislation to address the decision by Census Bureau and the Office of Management of Budget (OMB) to move Brunswick County from the Wilmington Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) to the Myrtle Beach MSA last year.

“Everybody in North Carolina knows that Brunswick County is part of the greater Wilmington area,” Sen. Burr said in a statement. “Instead of mindlessly applying bureaucratic rules, the administration needs to address what reality looks like for people in North Carolina.”

In a news release, Burr claims the move is hurting eastern North Carolina. He argues MSAs are commonly used by businesses to determine the size of new markets and to analyze the workforce. Separating Brunswick County from Wilmington has led to an understatement of the size of the state’s economy in the region and hurt economic development, he says.

If passed, the bill would require the Director of the Office of Management and Budget to put Brunswick County back in the same MSA as Wilmington.

Civic and political leaders tried without success to convince OMB to reverse the decision last year.

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