Hoeven Continues Effort to Ensure Administration Ends Proposal to Change Metro Area Status

Senator Again Presses OMB to Abandon Change, Outlining Negative Impacts

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven today continued his efforts to press the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to abandon plans to change the current definition of a Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). 

Hoeven joined Senators John Boozman (R-Ark.) and Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) and a bipartisan group of senators in outlining to OMB Acting Director Rob Fairweather the negative consequences that doubling the minimum requirement for MSA from 50,000 to 100,000 people would have on rural communities. Click here for the full letter.

“Though the consideration of nonstatistical uses is not the priority of OMB, ignoring the unwritten effects that MSA’s have on the decision-making process of our government would cause major disruptions with grant and entitlement programs, medical reimbursements, economic development, housing initiatives, and more,” the senators wrote. “The MSA metric has become a critical tool so broadly used that changing it without considering its far-reaching impacts is short-sighted.”

Hoeven also joined Senators Amy Klobuchar, Tina Smith, Kevin Cramer and others in pressing OMB Deputy Administrator Dominic Mancini, who oversees the agency at OMB responsible for governmental statistics, to abandon the proposal. The senators wrote that “this change could result in the loss of federal programming for many small- and mid-sized counties, cities and towns across the country.”

These are Hoeven’s latest efforts to ensure the administration does not move forward with this proposal. Earlier this month, Hoeven urged Fairweather to reject this change and further joined his colleagues in stressing the negative impacts that changing the criteria would have on over 140 rural communities across the country including Bismarck, Grand Forks and Minot.