If you’ve had your TV or radio on or read any local print media lately, you’ve most likely noticed items regarding Spokane and Kootenai counties being merged into one statistical area, such as this one from the Spokesman-Review and this article from the Coeur d’Alene Press.

Well folks, the media may have jumped on this one a little early, because while it’s likely, the U.S. Census Bureau says no official designation change will happen for at least a year, and more likely closer to 2013. As far as how that affects the workings of a Metropolitan Planning Organization such as SRTC or Kootenai Metropolitan Planning Organization, or transportation funding, we’re not expecting any changes.

The only big change this is expected to bring about is how the area markets itself.

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