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 Decade: 2000-2009
 Year: 2005
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
9/11 Commission Recommendations: The Senate Confirmation Process for Presidential Nominees
On July 22, 2004, the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, known as the 9/11 Commission, issued its final report, detailing the events up to and including the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks upon the United States. The 9/11 Commission recommended that the Senate adopt rules requiring hearings and votes to confirm or reject national security nominees within 30 days of their submission at the start of each new presidential administration. Implementing the commission's proposal would involve imposing new restrictions on both the power of committee chairs to control the agenda of their committees and the rights of Senators to delay or block nominations through holds and extended debate. This report discusses in detail this proposal, how it could be implemented, and the potential effects of its implementation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10108/
S. 147/H.R. 309: Process for Federal Recognition of a Native Hawaiian Governmental Entity
S. 147/H.R. 309, companion bills introduced in the 109th Congress, represent an effort to accord to Native Hawaiians a means of forming a governmental entity that could enter into government-to-government relations with the United States. This report describes the provisions of the reported version of S. 147; outlines some federal statutes and recent cases which might be relevant to the issue of federal recognition of a Native Hawaiian entity; and recounts some legal arguments that have been presented in the debate on this legislation. It includes a brief outline of the provisions of a substitute amendment expected to be offered in lieu of the reported version of S. 147, when Senate debate, which was interrupted by the filing of a cloture motion on July 29, resumes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7907/
S. 219: The National Employee Savings and Trust Equity Guarantee Act
On July 26, 2005, the Senate Finance Committee approved S. 219, the “National Employee Savings and Trust Equity Guarantee (NESTEG) Act of 2005,” a bill to reform federal pension laws. This report summarizes the major provisions of the bill, as approved by the Committee. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7677/
S. 1783: The Pension Security and Transparency Act of 2005
On September 28, the Senate Finance Committee and the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions announced that they had reached a compromise on a pension reform bill for consideration by the full Senate. The compromise bill has been introduced as S. 1783, “The Pension Security and Transparency Act of 2005.” S. 1783 combines provisions of S. 219, “The National Employee Savings and Trust Equity Guarantee Act,” reported by the Finance Committee, and “The Defined Benefit Security Act,” reported by the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. This report summarizes the major provisions of the compromise bill, as announced by the chairmen and ranking members of the two committees. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7676/
Access to Government Information in the United States
The Constitution of the United States makes no specific allowance for any one of the co-equal branches to have access to information held by the others and contains no provision expressly establishing a procedure for, or a right of, public access to government information. Nonetheless, Congress has legislated various public access laws. These include two records access statutes — the Freedom of Information Act (5 U.S.C. 552) and the Privacy Act (5 U.S.C. 552a) — and two meetings access statutes — the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.) and the Government in the Sunshine Act (5 U.S.C. 552b). Moreover, due to the American separation of powers model of government, interbranch conflicts over the accessibility of information are neither unexpected nor necessarily destructive. The federal courts, historically, have been reluctant to review and resolve “political questions” involving information disputes between Congress and the executive branch. Although there is considerable interbranch cooperation, such conflicts probably will continue to occur on occasion. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6257/
Accounting Problems at Fannie Mae
On September 22, 2004, the Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Supervision (OFHEO) made public a report that was highly critical of accounting methods at Fannie Mae, the government-sponsored enterprise that plays a leading role in the secondary mortgage market. OFHEO charged Fannie Mae with not following generally accepted accounting practices in two critical areas: (1) amortization of discounts, premiums, and fees involved in the purchase of home mortgages and (2) accounting for financial derivatives contracts. According to OFHEO, these deviations from standard accounting rules allowed Fannie Mae to reduce volatility in reported earnings, present investors with an artificial picture of steadily growing profits, and, in at least one case, to meet financial performance targets that triggered the payment of bonuses to company executives. On November 15, 2004, Fannie Mae reported that it was unable to file a third-quarter earnings statement because its auditor, KPMG, refused to sign off on the accounting results. On December 15, 2004, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), after finding inadequacies in Fannie’s accounting policies and methodologies, directed Fannie Mae to restate its accounting results since 2001. Shortly thereafter, the company’s CEO and CFO resigned. It is estimated that earnings since 2001 will be revised downwards by as much as $12 billion, but the formal restatement of earnings is not expected before late 2006. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8305/
Active Military Sonar and Marine Mammals: Events and References
The deployment of active sonar by the U.S. Navy and its potential impacts on marine mammals has been an ongoing issue of intense debate; regulatory, legislative, and judicial activity; and international concern. This report summarizes legal and political events related to active sonar and marine mammals since 1994. This report summarizes some of the more significant recent events pertaining to active military sonar, in particular. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8633/
Active Military Sonar and Marine Mammals: Events and References
The deployment of active sonar by the U.S. Navy and its potential impacts on marine mammals has been an ongoing issue of intense debate; regulatory, legislative, and judicial activity; and international concern. This report summarizes legal and political events related to active sonar and marine mammals since 1994. This report summarizes some of the more significant recent events pertaining to active military sonar, in particular. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7920/
Active Sonar and Marine Mammals: Chronology with References
The deployment of active sonar by the U.S. Navy and its potential impacts on marine mammals has been an ongoing issue of intense debate; regulatory, legislative, and judicial activity; and international concern. This report provides a chronology of significant events and documents since 1994. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7352/
Active Sonar and Marine Mammals: Chronology with References
The deployment of active sonar by the U.S. Navy and its potential impacts on marine mammals has been an ongoing issue of intense debate; regulatory, legislative, and judicial activity; and international concern. This report provides a chronology of significant events and documents since 1994. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7353/
Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP): Implementation of the No Child Left Behind Act
This report is intended to provide an overview of the Adequate Yearly Process (AYP) concept and several related issues, a description of the AYP provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act, and an analysis of the implementation of these provisions by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the states. It will be updated when major administrative actions are taken by ED, or substantial new data on state implementation become available. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9665/
Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP): Implementation of the No Child Left Behind Act
This report is intended to provide an overview of the Adequate Yearly Process (AYP) concept and several related issues, a description of the AYP provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act, and an analysis of the implementation of these provisions by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the states. It will be updated when major administrative actions are taken by ED, or substantial new data on state implementation become available. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9667/
Administrative Subpoenas and National Security Letters in Criminal and Foreign Intelligence Investigations: Background and Proposed Adjustments
Administrative subpoena authority, including closely related national security letter authority, is the power vested in various administrative agencies to compel testimony or the production of documents or both in aid of the agencies’ performance of their duties. During the 108th Congress, the President urged Congress to expand and re-enforce statutory authority to use administrative subpoenas and national security letters in criminal and foreign intelligence investigations; and legislation was introduced for that purpose. Related proposals have been offered during the 109th Congress, some of which deal with national security letter authority. Proponents of expanded use emphasize the effectiveness of administrative subpoenas as an investigative tool and question the logic of its availability in drug and health care fraud cases but not in terrorism cases. Critics suggest that it is little more than a constitutionally suspect “trophy” power, easily abused and of little legitimate use. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6283/
Administrative Subpoenas and National Security Letters in Criminal and Intelligence Investigations: A Sketch
Administrative subpoena authority, including closely related national security letter authority, is the power vested in various administrative agencies to compel testimony or the production of documents or both in aid of the agencies’ performance of their duties. Both the President and Members of Congress have called for statutory adjustments relating to the use of administrative subpoenas and national security letters in criminal and foreign intelligence investigations. One lower federal court has found the sweeping gag orders and lack of judicial review that mark one of the national security letter practices constitutionally defective. Proponents of expanded use emphasize the effectiveness of administrative subpoenas as an investigative tool and question the logic of its availability in drug and health care fraud cases but not in terrorism cases. Critics suggest that it is little more than a constitutionally suspect “trophy” power, easily abused and of little legitimate use. This is an abridged version — without footnotes, appendices, quotation marks and most citations to authority — of Administrative Subpoenas and National Security Letters in Criminal and Foreign Intelligence Investigations: Background and Proposed Adjustments, CRS Report RL32880. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6282/
Adult Education and Literacy: Overview and Reauthorization Proposals of the 109th Congress
The 109th Congress is considering the reauthorization of federal adult education and literacy programs. The Adult Education and Family Literacy Act (AEFLA) authorized these programs through FY2003. The primary AEFLA activity is a state grant program that supports education and literacy services for educationally disadvantaged adults. The AEFLA also authorizes national leadership activities in adult education and literacy, and the National Institute for Literacy. The FY2005 AEFLA appropriation is $585 million; the FY2006 budget request would reduce funding to $216 million. The AEFLA was enacted as Title II of the Workforce Investment Act of 1998 (WIA), P.L. 105-220, on August 7, 1998. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7291/
The Advanced Technology Program
The Advanced Technology Program (ATP) was created by P.L. 100-418, the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988, to encourage public-private cooperation in the development of pre-competitive technologies with broad application across industries. This activity has been targeted for elimination as a means to cut federal spending. Since FY2000, the original House-passed appropriation bills have not included funding for ATP. Many of the Administration’s budget requests have proposed termination of the program. However, ATP continues to be supported, although at levels below that achieved in FY1995 when the activity was expanded significantly. This report discusses funding (or lack thereof) appropriated for the ATP for FY2006. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10087/
Affirmative Action: Justice O'Connor's Opinions
An examination of Justice O’Connor’s opinions reveals a gradual shift in perspective regarding the legal and constitutional standards to be applied in evaluating governmental affirmative action efforts, and the manner of their application in various legal and factual settings. This report briefly surveys decisions of retiring Justice Sandra Day O’Connor in affirmative action cases, an area where her opinions have frequently determined the outcome. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7762/
Afghanistan: Narcotics and U.S. Policy
This report describes the structure and development of the narcotics trade in Afghanistan and explores its relevance to Afghan, U.S., and international security interests, including the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation that the United States make a long term commitment to the stability and security of Afghanistan. The report provides current statistical information on the opium trade, profiles its various participants, explores alleged narco-terrorist linkages, and reviews the U.S. and international policy response since late 2001. The report also considers current policy debates regarding the role of the U.S. military in future counternarcotics operations in Afghanistan; planned opium poppy eradication; and funding issues for Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7171/
Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
The United States and its allies are helping Afghanistan emerging from more than 22 years of warfare, although substantial risk to Afghan stability remains. Before the U.S. military campaign against the orthodox Islamist Taliban movement began on October 7, 2001, Afghanistan had been mired in conflict since the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. The defeat of the Taliban has enabled the United States and its coalition partners to send forces throughout Afghanistan to search for Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters and leaders that remain at large, including Osama bin Laden. As the war against remaining Al Qaeda and Taliban elements winds down, the United States is shifting its military focus toward stabilizing the interim government, including training a new Afghan national army, and supporting the international security force (ISAF) that is helping the new government provide security. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6915/
Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
Afghanistan’s stabilization appears to be gathering strength, about three years after the U.S.-led war that brought the current government to power. Successful presidential elections held on October 9, 2004 appear to be accelerating political and economic reconstruction, and the insurgency led by remnants of the former Taliban regime has been diminishing significantly. Since the defeat of the Taliban, Afghanistan no longer serves as a safe base of operations for Al Qaeda. Remaining obstacles to stability include the continued local authority of militias controlled by regional leaders and growing narcotics trafficking. U.S. stabilization measures focus on strengthening the central government and its security forces. This report discusses U.S. efforts in Afghanistan at length, as well as the efforts of other countries around the world and the costs of U.S. aid to Afghanistan. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6912/
Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
The United States and its allies are helping Afghanistan emerging from more than 22 years of warfare, although substantial risk to Afghan stability remains. Before the U.S. military campaign against the orthodox Islamist Taliban movement began on October 7, 2001, Afghanistan had been mired in conflict since the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. The defeat of the Taliban has enabled the United States and its coalition partners to send forces throughout Afghanistan to search for Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters and leaders that remain at large, including Osama bin Laden. As the war against remaining Al Qaeda and Taliban elements winds down, the United States is shifting its military focus toward stabilizing the interim government, including training a new Afghan national army, and supporting the international security force (ISAF) that is helping the new government provide security. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6914/
Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
The United States and its allies are helping Afghanistan emerging from more than 22 years of warfare, although substantial risk to Afghan stability remains. Before the U.S. military campaign against the orthodox Islamist Taliban movement began on October 7, 2001, Afghanistan had been mired in conflict since the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. The defeat of the Taliban has enabled the United States and its coalition partners to send forces throughout Afghanistan to search for Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters and leaders that remain at large, including Osama bin Laden. As the war against remaining Al Qaeda and Taliban elements winds down, the United States is shifting its military focus toward stabilizing the interim government, including training a new Afghan national army, and supporting the international security force (ISAF) that is helping the new government provide security. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6913/
Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
The United States and its allies are helping Afghanistan emerging from more than 22 years of warfare, although substantial risk to Afghan stability remains. Before the U.S. military campaign against the orthodox Islamist Taliban movement began on October 7, 2001, Afghanistan had been mired in conflict since the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. The defeat of the Taliban has enabled the United States and its coalition partners to send forces throughout Afghanistan to search for Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters and leaders that remain at large, including Osama bin Laden. As the war against remaining Al Qaeda and Taliban elements winds down, the United States is shifting its military focus toward stabilizing the interim government, including training a new Afghan national army, and supporting the international security force (ISAF) that is helping the new government provide security. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7145/
Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy
The United States and its allies are helping Afghanistan emerging from more than 22 years of warfare, although substantial risk to Afghan stability remains. Before the U.S. military campaign against the orthodox Islamist Taliban movement began on October 7, 2001, Afghanistan had been mired in conflict since the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. The defeat of the Taliban has enabled the United States and its coalition partners to send forces throughout Afghanistan to search for Taliban and Al Qaeda fighters and leaders that remain at large, including Osama bin Laden. As the war against remaining Al Qaeda and Taliban elements winds down, the United States is shifting its military focus toward stabilizing the interim government, including training a new Afghan national army, and supporting the international security force (ISAF) that is helping the new government provide security. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7144/
Afghanistan: Presidential and Parliamentary Elections
Presidential elections in Afghanistan were held on October 9, 2004, with heavy turnout and minimal violence. Karzai was declared the winner on November 3, 2004 with about 55% of the vote. Parliamentary, provincial, and district elections were to be held in April-May 2005, but parliamentary and provincial elections are now to be held September 18, 2005; district elections are put off until 2006. See CRS Report RL30588, Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6722/
Afghanistan: Presidential and Parliamentary Elections
Presidential elections were held on October 9, 2004, with heavy turnout and minimal violence. Karzai won with about 55% of the vote. In a climate of escalating insurgent violence in Afghanistan, parliamentary and provincial elections are to be held on September 18, 2005; district elections are put off until 2006. See CRS Report RL30588, Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6724/
Afghanistan: Presidential and Parliamentary Elections
Presidential elections in Afghanistan were held on October 9, 2004, with heavy turnout and minimal violence. Karzai was declared the winner on November 3, 2004 with about 55% of the vote, and he subsequently named a cabinet incorporating most major factions but stressing qualifications. Parliamentary, provincial, and district elections were to be held in April-May 2005, but they are now almost certain to be postponed until at least September 2005. See CRS Report RL30588, Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6723/
Afghanistan: Presidential and Parliamentary Elections
Presidential elections were held on October 9, 2004, with heavy turnout and minimal violence. Karzai won with about 55% of the vote. In a climate of escalating insurgent violence in Afghanistan, parliamentary and provincial elections are to be held on September 18, 2005; district elections are put off until 2006. See CRS Report RL30588, Afghanistan: Post-War Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7229/
Africa, the G8, and the Blair Initiative
Britain's Prime Minister Blair assumed the rotating presidency of the G8 group of nations (see text box) in January 2005, and he intends to use the July 2005 G8 summit, which he will chair, to push his Africa development initiative. Climate change will be the second focus of the G8 meeting, being called the "Gleneagles summit." The purpose of this report is to provide background on Africa, the G8, and the Gleneagles meeting. It outlines the British proposals and the U.S. reaction to them to date. In addition, it briefly reviews the problems that have inhibited African development and the response to those problems at previous G8 meetings. For additional information, see CRS Report RL32489, Africa: Development Issues and Policy Options, and CRS Issue Brief IB95052, Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7590/
Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues
This report discusses the issue of U.S. economic assistance to sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the importance of continued assistance in light of U.S. national security and also various U.S.-led efforts to promote reform amongst African citizens themselves. U.S. assistance finds its way to Africa through a variety of channels, including the USAID-administered DA program, food aid programs, and indirect aid provided through international financial institutions and the United Nations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6233/
Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues
This report discusses the issue of U.S. economic assistance to sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the importance of continued assistance in light of U.S. national security and also various U.S.-led efforts to promote reform amongst African citizens themselves. U.S. assistance finds its way to Africa through a variety of channels, including the USAID-administered DA program, food aid programs, and indirect aid provided through international financial institutions and the United Nations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6900/
Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues
This report discusses the issue of U.S. economic assistance to sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the importance of continued assistance in light of U.S. national security and also various U.S.-led efforts to promote reform amongst African citizens themselves. U.S. assistance finds its way to Africa through a variety of channels, including the USAID-administered DA program, food aid programs, and indirect aid provided through international financial institutions and the United Nations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6898/
Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues
This report discusses the issue of U.S. economic assistance to sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the importance of continued assistance in light of U.S. national security and also various U.S.-led efforts to promote reform amongst African citizens themselves. U.S. assistance finds its way to Africa through a variety of channels, including the USAID-administered DA program, food aid programs, and indirect aid provided through international financial institutions and the United Nations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs6899/
Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues
This report discusses the issue of U.S. economic assistance to sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the importance of continued assistance in light of U.S. national security and also various U.S.-led efforts to promote reform amongst African citizens themselves. U.S. assistance finds its way to Africa through a variety of channels, including the USAID-administered DA program, food aid programs, and indirect aid provided through international financial institutions and the United Nations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7875/
Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues
This report discusses the issue of U.S. economic assistance to sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the importance of continued assistance in light of U.S. national security and also various U.S.-led efforts to promote reform amongst African citizens themselves. U.S. assistance finds its way to Africa through a variety of channels, including the USAID-administered DA program, food aid programs, and indirect aid provided through international financial institutions and the United Nations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7874/
Africa: U.S. Foreign Assistance Issues
This report discusses the issue of U.S. economic assistance to sub-Saharan Africa, highlighting the importance of continued assistance in light of U.S. national security and also various U.S.-led efforts to promote reform amongst African citizens themselves. U.S. assistance finds its way to Africa through a variety of channels, including the USAID-administered DA program, food aid programs, and indirect aid provided through international financial institutions and the United Nations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7876/
Aging Infrastructure: Dam Safety
To help inform discussions on the federal role in dam safety, this report provides background information on the nation’s dam safety activities and funding mechanisms. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7622/
Agricultural Biotechnology: Background and Recent Issues
Since the first genetically engineered (GE) crops (also called GM [genetically modified] crops, or GMOs, genetically modified organisms) became commercially available in the mid-1990s, U.S. soybean, cotton, and corn farmers have rapidly adopted them. As adoption has spread, there have been policy debates over the costs and benefits of GE products. Issues include the impacts of GE crops on the environment and food safety, and whether GE foods should be specially labeled. Congress generally has been supportive of GE agricultural products, although some Members have expressed wariness about their adoption and regulation. The 109th Congress will likely continue to follow trade developments, particularly the U.S.-EU dispute, as well as U.S. regulatory mechanisms for approving biotech foods. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9096/
Agricultural Biotechnology: The U.S.-EU Dispute
In May 2003, the United States, Canada, and Argentina initiated a formal challenge before the World Trade Organization (WTO) of the European Union’s (EU’s) de facto moratorium on approving new agricultural biotechnology products, in place since 1998. Although the EU effectively lifted the moratorium in May 2004 by approving a genetically engineered (GE) corn variety, the three countries are pursuing the case, in part because a number of EU member states continue to block approved biotech products. Because of delays, the WTO is expected to decide the case by December 2005. The moratorium reportedly cost U.S. corn growers some $300 million in exports to the EU annually. The EU moratorium, U.S. officials contend, threatened other agricultural exports not only to the EU, but also to other parts of the world where the EU approach to regulating agricultural biotechnology is taking hold. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9097/
Agricultural Credit: Institutions and Issues
The federal government has a long history of providing credit assistance to farmers by issuing direct loans and guarantees, and creating rural lending institutions. These institutions include the Farm Credit System (FCS), which is a network of borrower-owned lending institutions operating as a government-sponsored enterprise, and the Farm Service Agency (FSA) of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), which makes or guarantees loans to farmers who cannot qualify at other lenders. When loans cannot be repaid, special bankruptcy provisions help family farmers reorganize debts and continue farming (P.L. 109-8 made Chapter 12 permanent and expanded eligibility). S. 238 and H.R. 399 (the Rural Economic Investment Act) would exempt commercial banks from paying taxes on profits from farm real estate loans, thus providing similar benefits as to the Farm Credit System. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs9098/
Agricultural Disaster Assistance
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) offers several permanently authorized programs to help farmers recover financially from a natural disaster, including federal crop insurance, the non-insured assistance program and emergency disaster loans. In recent years, Congress frequently has made supplemental financial assistance available to farmers and ranchers on an ad-hoc basis, most notably in the form of direct crop disaster payments and emergency livestock assistance. Congress provided an estimated $3.1 billion of such assistance in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2003 (P.L. 108-7) for 2001 and 2002 crop and livestock losses. Some farm groups would like to see similar assistance provided for 2003 losses, particularly in regions of the Midwest and West that have experienced prolonged drought conditions. To date, no ad-hoc assistance has been made available for 2003 losses. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7209/
Agricultural Export and Food Aid Programs
This report discusses projected agricultural imports and exports for FY2005, as well as legislation that deals with federal programs in support of agricultural exports and federal aid dedicated to farms and agricultural reform. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10117/
Agricultural Export and Food Aid Programs
This report discusses projected agricultural imports and exports for FY2005, as well as legislation that deals with federal programs in support of agricultural exports and federal aid dedicated to farms and agricultural reform. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs10116/
Agricultural Issues in the 109th Congress
A number of issues affecting U.S. agriculture are receiving attention during the 109th Congress. Some are related to new initiatives or to unfinished legislation from the 108th Congress; others have been the focus of ongoing congressional oversight. Although the current (2002) farm bill (P.L. 107-171) generally does not expire until 2007, the agriculture committees could begin hearings on a new measure later this year. Meanwhile, the agriculture committees are required by the adopted FY2006 budget resolution to report legislation that reduces spending on mandatory food and agriculture support programs by $3 billion over the next five years. Other issues of importance to agriculture during the 109th Congress include the possible reauthorization of an expiring dairy support program; multilateral and bilateral trade negotiations; concerns about agroterrorism, food safety, and animal and plant diseases (e.g., “mad cow” disease and Asian soybean rust); high energy costs; environmental issues; and a number of agricultural marketing matters. This report will be updated if significant developments ensue. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8068/
Agricultural Issues in the 109th Congress
A number of issues affecting U.S. agriculture are receiving attention during the 109th Congress. The agriculture committees are required by the FY2006 budget resolution to report legislation this year that reduces spending on mandatory food and agriculture support programs by $3 billion over the next five years. Other issues of importance to agriculture during the 109th Congress include the possible reauthorization of an expiring dairy support program; consideration of emergency farm disaster assistance; multilateral and bilateral trade negotiations; concerns about agroterrorism, food safety, and animal and plant diseases (e.g., “mad cow” disease and avian flu); high energy costs; environmental issues; and a number of agricultural marketing matters. This report will be updated if significant developments ensue. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8069/
Agricultural Issues in the 109th Congress
A number of issues affecting U.S. agriculture are receiving attention during the 109th Congress. Some are related to new initiatives or to unfinished legislation from the 108th Congress; others have been the focus of ongoing congressional oversight. The agriculture committees are required by the FY2006 budget resolution to report legislation this year that reduces spending on mandatory food and agriculture support programs by $3 billion over the next five years. Other issues of importance to agriculture during the 109th Congress include the possible reauthorization of an expiring dairy support program; multilateral and bilateral trade negotiations; concerns about agroterrorism, food safety, and animal and plant diseases (e.g., “mad cow” disease and Asian soybean rust); high energy costs; environmental issues; and a number of agricultural marketing matters. Although the current (2002) farm bill (P.L. 107-171) generally does not expire until 2007, the agriculture committees could begin hearings on a new measure later this year. This report will be updated if significant developments ensue. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7333/
Agriculture: A Glossary of Terms, Programs, and Laws, 2005 Edition
This report includes a glossary of approximately 2,500 agriculture and related terms (e.g., food programs, conservation, forestry, environmental protection, etc.). Besides defining terms and phrases with specialized meanings for agriculture, the glossary also identifies acronyms, agencies, programs, and laws related to agriculture. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7246/
Agriculture and FY2006 Budget Reconciliation
During the week of December 18, 2005, both the House and Senate approved the conference agreement on the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 (H.Rept. 109-362, S. 1932), which includes net reductions of $2.7 billion over five years for USDA mandatory programs. Included in the agreement is a $1.7 billion reduction in farm commodity support programs, a $934 million reduction in conservation spending, a $620 million reduction in a mandatory research program, and $419 million cut in rural development programs, as scored by CBO over a five-year period (FY2006-2010). The measure also includes a two-year extension of a dairy income support program, at an estimated cost of $998 million. No reductions to food stamp spending were included in the conference agreement. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8741/
Agriculture and FY2006 Budget Reconciliation
The FY2006 budget resolution (H.Con.Res. 95, H.Rept. 109-62) contains reconciliation instructions that require authorizing committees to report legislation to reduce spending on mandatory programs within each committee’s jurisdiction. The resolution instructed the House and Senate Agriculture Committees to report legislation reducing spending on USDA mandatory programs by $173 million in FY2006 and $3.0 billion over five years (FY2006-FY2010). The House and Senate Agriculture Committees have completed action on their recommendations ($3.65 billion in the House and $3.0 billion in the Senate). The two measures would reduce spending on farm commodity and conservation programs in varying ways. The House measure also eliminates funding for various rural development programs and reduces food stamp spending. The Senate extends authority for a dairy income support program, which would require an offset of its projected cost. Reconciliation floor action is expected in November. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs8075/
Agriculture and FY2006 Budget Reconciliation
On April 29, 2005, Congress completed action on the FY2006 budget resolution (H.Con.Res. 95, H.Rept. 109-62). This measure contains reconciliation instructions that require authorizing committees to report legislation to reduce spending on mandatory programs within each committee’s jurisdiction. To reduce spending in mandatory U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs, conferees instructed the House and Senate Agriculture Committees to reduce mandatory spending by $173 million in FY2006 and $3.0 billion over five years (FY2006-FY2010). The Bush Administration earlier proposed changes to several mandatory USDA programs, which it said would save $5.7 billion over five years (and which the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) subsequently scored at $9.4 billion in reductions). The agriculture committees must determine how to divide the cuts among the various programs under their jurisdiction by September 16, 2005. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metacrs7596/
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