The Compact includes the following points:
Economic development will be fostered through sustainable use and responsible management of Basin waters.
In general, there will be a ban on new diversions of water from the Basin but limited exceptions could be allowed in communities near the Basin when rigorous standards are met.
Communities that apply for an exception will have a clear, predictable decision making process; standards to be met; and, opportunities to appeal decisions. These processes and standards do not exist under current law.
The States will use a consistent standard to review proposed uses of Basin water. The States will have flexibility regarding their water management programs and how to apply this standard.
Regional goals and objectives for water conservation and efficiency will be developed, and they will be reviewed every five years. Each State will develop and implement a water conservation and efficiency program that may be voluntary or mandatory.
A broad, bi-partisan consensus has been built in support of the Compact. The Compact was developed in collaboration with regional partners who have also played a key role in its implementation. Members of Congress, Mayors, local government officials and stakeholders have all been instrumental.