Executive Order No. 49, dated September 18, 1969, established eight regions in North Dakota. The purpose of this order was to improve the efficiency and economy in state and local government through regional grouping of counties for planning and administration of state services.
On February 9, 1972, a regional council was organized, consisting of one county commissioner and one soil conservation district supervisor from each of the seven counties in Region II. The Council was established to facilitate the development of a Resource Conservation and Development (RC&D) project application.
Initially the Council was organized as an independent, nonprofit, non-partisan, unincorporated group having as its primary concern the acceleration of the conservation, development, and proper use of the natural resources within the project area.
On April 4, 1972, the RC&D application was submitted to the U.S. Department of Agriculture via the Soil Conservation Service. Rather than sit back and wait for the approval of this application, the Council began to look at other means of providing assistance to the seven participating counties.
Programs of planning and development assistance offered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the Economic Development Administration (EDA) appeared meaningful. To qualify for these programs, however, the Council had to be reorganized to provide for representation by cities and minority groups. The Soil Conservation Service and the Cooperative Extension Service provided some assistance during this re-organizational phase.
A new constitution and bylaws was adopted on January 8, 1973.
To facilitate its development efforts, the Council was incorporated as a nonprofit corporation on October 2, 1973.
On July 25, 1974, the Council's Articles of Incorporation were amended changing it's name to the Souris Basin Planning Council.