Texas Association of Regional Councils
The Texas Association of Regional Councils (TARC) is the statewide association of regional councils, whose members are focused on enhancing quality of life through regional strategies, partnerships, and solutions. The 24 regional councils, also known as councils of governments (COGs), comprising city, county, and special district members working together to implement cost-effective, results-oriented strategies that address statewide and local needs on a regional scale. PBRPC is one of these 24 COGs.
Regional councils, or councils of governments (COGs), are voluntary associations of local governments formed under Texas law. These associations deal with the problems and planning needs that cross the boundaries of individual local governments or that require regional attention.
Regional services offered by COGs are varied. Services are undertaken in cooperation with member governments, the private sector, and state and federal partners, and include but are not limited to the following: planning and implementing regional homeland security strategies; operating law enforcement training academies; promoting regional municipal solid waste and environmental quality planning; providing cooperative purchasing options for governments; managing region-wide services to the elderly; maintaining and improving regional 9-1-1 systems; promoting regional economic development; operating specialized transit systems; and providing management services for member governments.
In addition, Texas’ regional COGs are responsible for regional planning activities that may differ from region to region, but typically include planning for economic growth, water supply and quality, air quality, transportation, emergency preparedness, and the coordinated delivery of various social services. Many councils of governments establish and host region-wide geographical information systems (GIS) as well as databases on regional population, economic, and land-use patterns.