The Tri-County Council for the Lower Eastern Shore of Maryland was formed by an Act of the Maryland General Assembly in 2001. The purpose of the Council is to facilitate regional planning and development in Somerset, Wicomico and Worcester counties.
The Council membership is made up of municipal, county and state elected officials as well as the county administrators from the three counties. The voting members are the five Somerset County Commissioners, four of the seven Wicomico County Council members, the Wicomico County Executive, five of the seven Worcester County Commissioners, one municipal representative from each of the three Counties, and the members of the General Assembly who represent the region and have a majority of their districts within the three counties. Currently, there are twenty three voting members and fourteen non-voting members. The full Committee meets quarterly.
The Council works closely with the Economic Development Administration (EDA) of the United States Department of Commerce and United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development. In addition, the Council partners with the Maryland Department of Commerce, the Rural Maryland Council (Maryland Department of Agriculture), the three Lower Shore Counties and the other rural Regional Councils in the State of Maryland.
In November 2009 the Council was designated as an Economic Development District (EDD) by the Economic Development Administration (EDA) of the United States Department of Commerce. This will allow the Council (on behalf of the Counties) to apply directly to the EDA for funding.