The Buckeye Hills region in southeastern Ohio is predominantly rural in nature, with large areas of the district covered by rolling hills and vegetation. The region is bordered by the Ohio River and steeped in U.S. and Appalachian history, as it is home to the first permanent settlement of the Northwest Territory (Marietta) and the first legislated public university as part of the Northwest Ordinance (Ohio University).
The rural nature of the region has lent itself to historically-strong economic sectors of mining, natural resource extraction, and manufacturing. More recently, counties in the region have become fast growing locations for oil and gas exploration and extraction from the Marcellus and Utica Shale formations that span the eastern counties of our district.
The population of the Buckeye Hills region is estimated over 260,000. Traditionally, the sectors which employ the most workers in the Buckeye Hills region have been manufacturing, retail trade, health care, accommodation services, and local government.
Southeast Ohio has a wealth of educational resources, including all or parts of 28 school districts and seven colleges. Between 2009 and 2013, the Buckeye Hills region has exceeded the state and federal rates of high school graduates and individuals with associate’s degrees.
The Buckeye Hills region has multiple modes of transportation actively contributing to the regional economy, including highway, rail, maritime, and limited public transportation. The district contains over 8,900 total miles of roads, 182 miles of rail, 147 miles of Ohio River frontage, and six transit agencies.
Membership in the Buckeye Hills Regional Council is open to all political subdivisions in the eight counties.
Membership may be extended to other local political subdivisions, government agencies, and quasi-governmental agencies located within the eight-county area as well as those organizations whose service areas extend beyond the Buckeye Hills region’s borders if that membership is conducive to facilitating federal, state, or regional planning objectives.
Local member dues contributions are received from each of the eight county governments, plus the municipalities of Athens, Belpre, Logan, and Marietta.