Southern Iowa Council of Governments (SICOG) is an organization that provides and coordinates community and economic development services through the delivery of planning services, technical program assistance, and grantsmanship.
“The Southern Iowa Council of Governments (SICOG) is a non-profit organization that provides and coordinates community and economic development services primarily through the delivery of planning services, technical program assistance, grant writing and grant administration to assist local governments and others in their efforts to improve the social and economic well-being of its eight-county service area.”
SICOG’s mission, is to be an active voluntary council of local governments and community leaders working together to enhance the quality of life for the people in the SICOG Region. SICOG’s goals are:
• To promote community and economic development;
• To serve as an advocate of the region;
• To provide a forum for common concerns and issues;
• To maximize resources;
• To promote and encourage leadership development;
• To use the best technologies and practices, and;
• To provide skilled professional staff.
All activities carried forth by SICOG should meet at least one of these goals. These goals are accomplished jointly by the board, which sets the policy direction for the organization, and by the staff, who carries it out.
In 1968 Governor Harold E. Hughes signed Executive Order # 11 that led to the establishment of the planning districts in Iowa. The Executive Order created regional planning commissions upon the action of local governments.
These councils of governments were formed by counties and cities to serve local governments and citizens in the regions across the State of Iowa. COGs address issues facing local government on a cooperative basis and provides coordination of services through planning, advocacy, technical assistance, and project development. Councils are formed through provisions of Chapter 504, 28E, and 28H of the Code of Iowa.
Local government leaders from — Adair, Adams, Clarke, Decatur, Ringgold, Taylor, and Union Counties – first met on Sept. 13, 1973, in the Lion’s Hall in Clearfield, to organize the Southern Iowa Planning organization. They chose Rodger Blobaum, Chairman; Will Raiser, Vice chair; and Frank Davis, Secretary. Seven representatives from each county were chosen to form bylaws, and an executive committee made up of a representative from each county was also formed. In 1985 Madison County joined the organization. The bylaws have been rewritten four times to better serve the region.
The Southern Iowa Council of Governments serves an area in south central Iowa that includes Adair, Adams, Clarke, Decatur, Madison, Ringgold, Taylor and Union Counties. It is bounded on the north by the Region XII Council of Governments, on the south by the State of Missouri, on the west by the Southwest Iowa Planning Council (Area XIII), and on the east by Chariton Valley. The eight counties cover 4,010 quare miles. The region is largely rural and according to the US Census, in 2010 has a population of 4,010 and averaged 17.4 persons per square mile, which is much less than the State of Iowa average of 54.5 persons per square mile.