(b) Each regional council formed pursuant to this article shall fulfill the purposes of development regions and shall be eligible to receive state funds and technical assistance in accordance with the provisions of this article.
(c) (1) Nothing herein contained shall in any way limit or restrict the powers, duties and responsibilities of planning bodies organized under article twenty-six of this chapter relating to interstate planning commissions.
(2) Interstate planning commissions in existence on the effective date of this article are hereby designated as the planning and development councils for the region, insofar as the West Virginia member counties of such interstate planning commissions are concerned, and such commissions shall be empowered to act as the planning and development councils for such regions insofar as the West Virginia member counties are concerned.
(3) When additional West Virginia counties are added, under the provisions of this article, to such interstate planning commissions, their membership in such commissions shall comply, insofar as the West Virginia counties are concerned, with the council membership requirements of this article.
(4) Regional councils or commissions established under this article and article twenty-six of this chapter may, at the option of the county courts of the participating West Virginia counties, continue to have all the powers, duties and responsibilities permitted and required under said article twenty-six, in addition to the powers, duties and responsibilities provided herein for regional councils.
(5) State regional councils or commissions and their corresponding boundaries in existence on the effective date of this article, which were established under the former provisions of this article, and any nonprofit corporation in existence on the effective date of this article, which was established under chapter thirty-one of this code and pursuant to section eighteen, article five, chapter seven of this code and which has had in its employ a full-time paid executive staff for a period of no less than six months immediately prior to the effective date of this article, may be designated by the governor as planning and development regions and regional councils. Such designation shall be made within sixty days after the effective date of this article. Regional councils so designated shall have a period of six months from the date of designation to comply with the membership structure required by this article. Nothing herein contained shall be construed to deprive such existing state regional councils of their legal authority prior to the expiration of the aforementioned six-month period.