Final Redefinition of the BEA Economic Areas

Final Redefinition of the BEA Economic Areas

Federal Register Notice
March 10, 1995
Volume 60, Number 47

AGENCY: Bureau of Economic Analysis, Commerce.

ACTION: Notice of final changes.

SUMMARY: This is the third and final Federal Register notice relating to the redefinition of the BEA economic areas (EA's). In the first notice (56 FR 13049, March 9, 1993), BEA announced its ``Intent to Revise the Boundaries of the BEA Economic Areas'' and presented the procedures used to define the then-current EA's. In the second notice (59 FR 55416, November 7, 1994), BEA presented for public comment a ``Proposed Redefinition of the BEA Economic Areas,'' which reduced their number from 183 to 174. This third notice presents the 172 EA's of the final redefinition, which reflects changes based on the comments received. In Alaska and western Montana, BEA is combining two EA's into one; and in Washington and Minnesota, BEA is reassigning a county from one EA to another.

EFFECTIVE DATE: April 10, 1995, BEA's regional economic measurement, analysis, and projections programs will use the new set of 172 EA's whenever EA data are presented.

ADDRESSES: Written inquiries may be sent to Kenneth Johnson, U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Economic Analysis BE-61, Regional Economic Analysis Division, Washington, DC 20230; fax (202) 606-5321. Inquiries also may be sent by electronic mail on the Internet to ``kenneth.johnson@bea.doc.gov''.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Kenneth Johnson, (202) 606-9219; fax (202) 606-5321.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Part I: Background

Under authority granted in 15 U.S.C. .175 et seq., BEA develops and presents geographically detailed economic data and facilitates regional economic analysis. As part of this obligation, in 1977, BEA defined 183 economic area (EA's) covering the entire nation. The 1995 redefinition is necessary to maintain the analytical usefulness of the areas in light of the substantial changes in area commuting patterns shown by the 1990 Census of Population.

Each EA consists of one or more economic nodes--metropolitan areas or similar areas that serve as centers of economic activity--and the surrounding counties that are economically related to the nodes. (Metropolitan areas include metropolitan statistical areas (MSA's), primary metropolitan statistical areas (PMSA's), and New England county metropolitan areas (NECMA's).) Commuting patterns are the main factor used in determining the economic relationship among counties. The EA definition procedure requires that, as far as possible, each area include both the place of work and the place of residence of its labor force.

For some analyses, government agencies and businesses need data that are more geographically detailed than EA data. Government agencies often use relatively small areas for design of their program regulations or implementation of their licensing programs. Businesses need such detail for determining plant locations and for defining sales and marketing territories. BEA is responding to these needs as part of the EA redefinition by first defining a set of 348 ``Component Economic Areas'' (CEA's) and then using these as building blocks for redefining the larger EA's.

Each CEA consists of a single economic node and the surrounding counties that are economically related to the node. Of the nodes, 90 percent are metropolitan, and 10 percent are nonmetropolitan. Each metropolitan area is the node of a different CEA; with minor exceptions, the nonmetropolitan nodes are nonmetropolitan counties where newspapers widely read in these areas are published.

In general, the procedure used to redefine the EA's is similar to that used in 1977. First, nodes are identified. Then, non-nodal counties are assigned to nodes, mainly based on commuting patterns and on newspaper circulation. A procedural difference is that now node identification and the assignment to nodes of non-nodal counties are done in a more systematic way and at a more geographically detailed level. The procedure first results in the definition of CEA's, which then are aggregated to form EA's.

Part II: Summary of Comments and Responses

In the previous Federal Register notice (59 FR 55416, November 7, 1994), BEA proposed the definition of 348 CEA's and 174 EA's. Persons who wished to comment on the proposal were given until December 22, 1994, to do so. Of 12 comments received, seven suggested no changes, and five suggested changes. In response to the comments, in two instances, BEA is combining two EA's into one and thus is reducing their number from 174 to 172; in two other instances, BEA is reassigning a county from one EA to another. In one comment, a change was proposed in the criteria for identifying CEA's, and in another comment, a delay was proposed in the date when the new EA's become effective; neither of these comments affects the final EA definition.

1. Economic Area Combinations

In the previous notice, BEA proposed two EA's, each a CEA as well, for Alaska--Anchorage and the Panhandle; a mountain range limits economic ties between the areas. In one comment, it was noted that for the two proposed EA's, a consistent set of regional economic data could be provided only for 1980 forward; prior to 1980, the Bureau of the Census used different boundaries for the ``Divisions'' of Alaska for which it assembled data. To overcome the data limitation, the final redefinition combines the two proposed EA's into one statewide EA, named for Anchorage. The proposed CEA's are retained, and they are subject to the data limitation.

In addition, in the previous notice, BEA proposed two EA's, each a CEA as well, for western Montana--Missoula and Butte. In one comment, it was suggested that commuting across these EA boundaries is not minimal; in contrast, in another comment, the proposed EA's were endorsed. In response to the first comment, the final redefinition combines the two proposed EA's into one EA, named for Missoula. In response to the second comment, the proposed CEA's are retained.

2. County Reassignments

In the previous notice, BEA proposed to assign Koochiching County, MN, to the Minneapolis EA and Kittitas County, WA, to the Seattle EA. In comments, it was noted that shopping opportunities attract many Koochiching residents to the Duluth EA and many Kittitas residents to the Richland EA. In addition, Koochiching residents are attracted by Duluth's recreational opportunities. In a further review of commuting data, BEA confirmed that nearly as many Koochiching residents commute to work to the Duluth EA as to the Minneapolis EA; and nearly as many Kittitas residents commute to work to the Richland EA as to the Seattle EA. Accordingly, Koochiching is reassigned to the Duluth EA, and Kittitas is reassigned to the Richland EA.

3. Identification of CEA's Having Nonmetropolitan Nodes

In the previous notice, BEA proposed that each CEA that has a nonmetropolitan node should contain at least five counties that are linked by ties of labor-force commuting, as well as of newspaper circulation. In one comment, it was suggested that newspaper circulation data should play a larger role in the identification of such CEA's. In particular, counties that are locations of newspapers read by specified numbers of persons could be identified as nonmetropolitan nodes, regardless of the number of counties economically tied to the nodes. In BEA's view, economic ties among counties should be given substantial weight in the identification of CEA's.

4. Effective Date for the New Economic Areas

The U.S. Department of Transportation's Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) presents data from its Commodity Flow Survey for regions; the regions, called National Transportation Analysis Regions (NTAR's), are groupings of the EA's previously published. This new set of EA's might entail a new set of NTAR's. In comments on the previous notice, BTS requested that BEA delay the effective date for the new EA's by one or two years in order to provide enough time for BTS and BEA to coordinate their area redefinitions. BEA cannot accommodate this request because it is committed to preparing economic projections for the redefined EA's as part of the set of BEA regional projections to be prepared this year (1995).

Part III: Map and List of the New 172 BEA Economic Areas

Codes from 001 to 172 are assigned to the new EA's in approximate geographic order, beginning with 001 in northern Maine, continuing south to Florida, then north to the Great Lakes, and continuing in a serpentine pattern to the West Coast. Analysts are cautioned that these codes differ from those in the previous notice. Except for the Western Oklahoma EA (126), the Northern Michigan EA (058), and the 17 EA's that mainly correspond to consolidated metropolitan statistical areas (CMSA's), each EA is named for the metropolitan area or city that is the node of its largest CEA and that is usually, but not always, the largest metropolitan area or city in the EA. The following list provides EA codes and names. EA boundaries and codes are shown on the map following the list.

EA code Name
001.............................. Bangor, ME.
002.............................. Portland, ME.
003.............................. Boston-Worcester-Lawrence-Lowell-Brockton, MA-NH.
004.............................. Burlington, VT.
005.............................. Albany-Schenectady-Troy, NY.
006.............................. Syracuse, NY.
007.............................. Rochester, NY.
008.............................. Buffalo-Niagara Falls, NY.
009.............................. State College, PA.
010.............................. New York-No. New Jersey-Long Island, NY-NJ-CT-PA (CMSA-70)
011.............................. Harrisburg-Lebanon-Carlisle, PA.
012.............................. Philadelphia-Wilmington-Atlantic City, PA-NJ-DE-MD (CMSA-77)
013.............................. Washington-Baltimore, DC-MD-VA-WV (CMSA-97)
014.............................. Salisbury, MD.
015.............................. Richmond-Petersburg, VA.
016.............................. Staunton, VA.
017.............................. Roanoke, VA.
018.............................. Greensboro-Winston-Salem-High Point, NC.
019.............................. Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill, NC.
020.............................. Norfolk-Virginia Beach-Newport News, VA-NC.
021.............................. Greenville, NC.
022.............................. Fayetteville, NC.
023.............................. Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill, NC-SC.
024.............................. Columbia, SC.
025.............................. Wilmington, NC.
026.............................. Charleston-North Charleston, SC.
027.............................. Augusta-Aiken, GA-SC.
028.............................. Savannah, GA.
029.............................. Jacksonville, FL.
030.............................. Orlando, FL.
031.............................. Miami-Fort Lauderdale, FL (CMSA-56).
032.............................. Fort Myers-Cape Coral, FL.
033.............................. Sarasota-Bradenton, FL.
034.............................. Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL.
035.............................. Tallahassee, FL.
036.............................. Dothan, AL.
037.............................. Albany, GA.
038.............................. Macon, GA.
039.............................. Columbus, GA-AL.
040.............................. Atlanta, GA.
041.............................. Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson, SC.
042.............................. Asheville, NC.
043.............................. Chattanooga, TN-GA.
044.............................. Knoxville, TN.
045.............................. Johnson City-Kingsport-Bristol, TN-VA.
046.............................. Hickory-Morganton, NC.
047.............................. Lexington, KY.
048.............................. Charleston, WV.
049.............................. Cincinnati-Hamilton, OH-KY-IN (CMSA-21).
050.............................. Dayton-Springfield, OH.
051.............................. Columbus, OH.
052.............................. Wheeling, WV-OH.
053.............................. Pittsburgh, PA.
054.............................. Erie, PA.
055.............................. Cleveland-Akron, OH (CMSA-28).
056.............................. Toledo, OH.
057.............................. Detroit-Ann Arbor-Flint, MI (CMSA-35).
058.............................. Northern Michigan, MI.
059.............................. Green Bay, WI.
060.............................. Appleton-Oshkosh-Neenah, WI.
061.............................. Traverse City, MI.
062.............................. Grand Rapids-Muskegon-Holland, MI.
063.............................. Milwaukee-Racine, WI (CMSA-63).
064.............................. Chicago-Gary-Kenosha, IL-IN-WI (CMSA-14).
065.............................. Elkhart-Goshen, IN.
066.............................. Fort Wayne, IN.
067.............................. Indianapolis, IN.
068.............................. Champaign-Urbana, IL.
069.............................. Evansville-Henderson, IN-KY.
070.............................. Louisville, KY-IN.
071.............................. Nashville, TN.
072.............................. Paducah, KY.
073.............................. Memphis, TN-AR-MS.
074.............................. Huntsville, AL.
075.............................. Tupelo, MS.
076.............................. Greenville, MS.
077.............................. Jackson, MS.
078.............................. Birmingham, AL.
079.............................. Montgomery, AL.
080.............................. Mobile, AL.
081.............................. Pensacola, FL.
082.............................. Biloxi-Gulfport-Pascagoula, MS.
083.............................. New Orleans, LA.
084.............................. Baton Rouge, LA.
085.............................. Lafayette, LA.
086.............................. Lake Charles, LA.
087.............................. Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX.
088.............................. Shreveport-Bossier City, LA.
089.............................. Monroe, LA.
090.............................. Little Rock-North Little Rock, AR.
091.............................. Fort Smith, AR-OK.
092.............................. Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers, AR.
093.............................. Joplin, MO.
094.............................. Springfield, MO.
095.............................. Jonesboro, AR.
096.............................. St. Louis, MO-IL.
097.............................. Springfield, IL.
098.............................. Columbia, MO.
099.............................. Kansas City, MO-KS.
100.............................. Des Moines, IA.
101.............................. Peoria-Pekin, IL.
102.............................. Davenport-Moline-Rock Island, IA-IL.
103.............................. Cedar Rapids, IA.
104.............................. Madison, WI.
105.............................. La Crosse, WI-MN.
106.............................. Rochester, MN.
107.............................. Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN-WI.
108.............................. Wausau, WI.
109.............................. Duluth-Superior, MN-WI.
110.............................. Grand Forks, ND-MN.
111.............................. Minot, ND.
112.............................. Bismarck, ND.
113.............................. Fargo-Moorhead, ND-MN.
114.............................. Aberdeen, SD.
115.............................. Rapid City, SD.
116.............................. Sioux Falls, SD. \
117.............................. Sioux City, IA-NE.
118.............................. Omaha, NE-IA.
119.............................. Lincoln, NE.
120.............................. Grand Island, NE.
121.............................. North Platte, NE.
122.............................. Wichita, KS.
123.............................. Topeka, KS.
124.............................. Tulsa, OK.
125.............................. Oklahoma City, OK.
126.............................. Western Oklahoma, OK.
127.............................. Dallas-Fort Worth, TX (CMSA-31).
128.............................. Abilene, TX.
129.............................. San Angelo, TX.
130.............................. Austin-San Marcos, TX.
131.............................. Houston-Galveston-Brazoria, TX (CMSA-42).
132.............................. Corpus Christi, TX.
133.............................. McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, TX.
134.............................. San Antonio, TX.
135.............................. Odessa-Midland, TX.
136.............................. Hobbs, NM.
137.............................. Lubbock, TX.
138.............................. Amarillo, TX.
139.............................. Santa Fe, NM.
140.............................. Pueblo, CO.
141.............................. Denver-Boulder-Greeley, CO (CMSA-34).
142.............................. Scottsbluff, NE.
143.............................. Caster, WY.
144.............................. Billings, MT.
145.............................. Great Falls, MT.
146.............................. Missoula, MT.
147.............................. Spokane, WA.
148.............................. Idaho Falls, ID.
149.............................. Twin Falls, ID.
150.............................. Boise City, ID.
151.............................. Reno, NV.
152.............................. Salt Lake City-Ogden, UT.
153.............................. Las Vegas, NV-AZ.
154.............................. Flagstaff, AZ.
155.............................. Farmington, NM.
156.............................. Albuquerque, NM.
157.............................. El Paso, TX.
158.............................. Phoenix-Mesa, AZ.
159.............................. Tucson, AZ.
160.............................. Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County, CA (CMSA-49)
161.............................. San Diego, CA.
162.............................. Fresno, CA.
163.............................. San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose, CA (CMSA-84).
164.............................. Sacramento-Yolo, CA (CMSA-82)
165.............................. Redding, CA.
166.............................. Eugene-Springfield, OR.
167.............................. Portland-Salem, OR-WA (CMSA-79).
168.............................. Pendleton, OR.
169.............................. Richland-Kennewick-Pasco, WA.
170.............................. Seattle-Tacoma-Bremerton, WA (CMSA-91)
171.............................. Anchorage, AK.
172.............................. Honolulu, HI.

Part IV: Availability of Additional Information

The codes, names, and numerical counts of the counties contained in each EA and CEA and of the CEA's contained in each EA are available through two electronic services from the Commerce Department's STAT- USA: For the Economic Bulletin Board (EBB), use a personal computer and modem, dial (202) 482-3870, and follow the instructions. For Internet, access the EBB using Telnet address ``ebb.stat-usa.gov'' for remote login, and download the file named ``eacodes.exe.'' For prices and other information about these services, call (202) 482-1986.

The codes, names, and numerical counts are also available on a 3\1/ 2\-inch, high-density diskette for $20. When ordering, please specify the BEA Accession Number 61-95-40-101. Send your order, along with a check or money order payable to ``Bureau of Economic Analysis,'' to Public Information Office, Order Desk BE-53, Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce, Washington, DC 20230. For further information or to order using MasterCard or VISA, call (202) 606-3700.

Carol S. Carson,
Director.

[FR Doc. 95-6008 Filed 3-9-95; 8:45 am]

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