Federal Statistical Area Delineations

On June 6, 2003, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) announced through Bulletin No. 03-04 an initial update to federal statistical area delineations based on the application of revised standards to the results of Census 2000. This was superseded by seven annual updates, plus two sets of corrections, through Bulletin No. 10-02, dated December 1, 2009. The updates per Bulletin No. 10-02 were implemented into the Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program in March 2010.

On February 28, 2013, OMB announced through Bulletin No. 13-01 revised delineations of Metropolitan Statistical Areas, Micropolitan Statistical Areas, and Combined Statistical Areas, and guidance on uses of the delineations of these areas. The LAUS program will be implementing these 2010-based delineations effective with the publication of January 2015 substate estimates of civilian labor force and unemployment in March 2015. A comprehensive list of the new areas and their geographic compositions is available here. Data will be revised back to the series beginnings based on the new delineations. Other Bureau of Labor Statistics programs implement revisions to federal statistical areas on a program-by-program basis.

The Office of Management and Budget is responsible for maintaining and updating statistical area delineations, a task it has performed every decade since the 1950 Census. OMB establishes and maintains these areas solely for statistical purposes. The delineations are intended to provide a nationally consistent set of geographic areas for collecting, tabulating, and publishing federal statistics. More information, including both the 2010- and 2000-based standards for delineating federal statistical areas, is available on the OMB website.

Comparison of Geographic Coverage Between the 2000 and 1990 Delineations:

  • United States:  Maps of 2000 Metropolitan and Micropolitan Areas vs. 1990 Metropolitan Areas (HTML) (PDF)
  • New England:  Maps of 2000 Metropolitan and Micropolitan NECTAs vs. 1990 Metropolitan Areas (HTML) (PDF)
  • States:  Maps of 1990 Metropolitan Areas (PDF 2.4MB)
  • States:  Maps of 2000 Metropolitan and Micropolitan Areas (PDF 2.6MB)

Census Bureau Links for Federal Statistical Areas:

Bureau of Labor Statistics Links for Federal Statistical Areas:


Last Modified Date:  September 8, 2014