Several states are considering the possibility of an interstate online poker compact intended to merge player pools and increase liquidity.  States such as California, Delaware, New Jersey and Nevada have already begun the process of regulating online poker on an intrastate basis.  Going one step further, Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval, recently announced that he has begun preliminary talks about forming an interstate online poker compact.  While speaking on the subject to a group of reporters Gov. Sandoval said “I’ve talked with a...

One of CSG's innovative policy programs is The National Center for Interstate Compacts (NCIC).  NCIC helps state leaders coordinate and cooperate to form compacts, which are contracts between states.  Recently, for example, NCIC worked with state leaders to make it easier for the children of military familes to transition from one state school to the next.  You can learn more about the interstate compact as a policy mechanism and the projects of NCIC by visiting the updated website at www.csg.org/compacts.

While interstate compacts are essentially contracts whose provisions are limited primarily by the imaginations of their drafters, their development has, in practice, evolved along best practices. Compacts are legally binding agreements between state governments. Because these dynamic institutions change with gubernatorial administrations and legislative representation, creating an agreement that adequately manages an ongoing and complex interstate relationship is critical, and delineating the governance apparatus is one way to ensure the smooth, continued operation of the compact.

In an effort to make compacts easier to understand and to help state legislators and policymakers more effectively use interstate compacts to address multi-state policy challenges, The Council of State Governments’ National Center for Interstate Compacts has relaunched its website and one-of-a-kind compacts database. Both tools are available at www.csg.org/compacts.

The use of interstate compacts has evolved considerably throughout the course of American history. Each state belongs, on average, to 25 different agreements of the approximately 215 active interstate compacts. In the last half century, interstate compacts have become more sophisticated and are being used to create administrative agencies to solve ongoing state policy challenges.

CSG's National Center for Interstate Compacts has launched its updated database of interstate compacts.  It is the only resource of its kind on the web today. 

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has called for the elimination of approximately $150,000 in state dues to the Interstate Commission on the Potomac River Basin.  The Commission, which was established in 1940 through the passage of the Potomac Valley Compact, promotes water quality and related land protection among the Potomac Basin states.  Virginia was a founding member of the compact, which also includes the District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.  The compact received Congressional Consent in 1940.