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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
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Same-Sex Marriages: Legal Issues

Same-Sex Marriages: Legal Issues

Date: May 9, 2012
Creator: Smith, Alison M.
Description: The recognition of same-sex marriages generates debate on both the federal and state levels. Variations in state law on the issue raise questions about the validity of such unions outside the contracted jurisdiction and have bearing on the distribution of federal benefits. This report discusses the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and it's legal challenges. It reviews legal principles applied to determine the validity of a marriage contracted in another state and surveys the various approaches employed by states to enable or to prevent same-sex marriage. The report also examines House and Senate resolutions introduced in previous Congresses proposing a constitutional amendment and limiting federal courts' jurisdiction to hear or determine any question pertaining to the interpretation of DOMA.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Federal Employees' Retirement System: Benefits and Financing

Federal Employees' Retirement System: Benefits and Financing

Date: May 10, 2012
Creator: Isaacs, Katelin P.
Description: Report discussing the retirement systems in place for federal employees. Most civilian federal employees who were hired before 1984 are covered by the Civil Service Retirement System, and contribute 7.0% of their pay to a retirement fund. Federal employees hired in 1984 or later are covered by the Federal Employees' Retirement System and contribute 0.8% of their pay to a retirement fund. Both require participants to contribute toward the cost of their pensions through a payroll tax. The taxable wage base is $110,100 in 2012. This report discusses both retirement funds.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The U.S. Postal Service's Use of Contractors to Deliver Mail: Background and Recent Developments

The U.S. Postal Service's Use of Contractors to Deliver Mail: Background and Recent Developments

Date: May 29, 2012
Creator: Kosar, Kevin R.
Description: Currently, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is collectively bargaining with the National Association of Letter Carriers (NALC) and National Rural Letter Carriers Association (NRLCA). One issue that may or may not be settled is the Postal Service's use of non-USPS employees (i.e., contractors) to deliver mail. If the parties cannot come to a satisfactory arrangement, Congress may be approached to consider the matter.
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Federal Research and Development Funding: FY2013

Federal Research and Development Funding: FY2013

Date: June 1, 2012
Creator: Sargent, John F., Jr.
Description: This report summarizes budgetary decisions relating to research and development funding for FY2013.
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Nominations to U.S. Circuit and District Courts by President Obama During the 111th and 112th Congresses

Nominations to U.S. Circuit and District Courts by President Obama During the 111th and 112th Congresses

Date: June 1, 2012
Creator: McMillion, Barry J.
Description: Recent Senate debates in the 112th Congress over judicial nominations have focused on issues such as the relative degree of success of President Barack Obama's nominees in gaining Senate confirmation (compared with other recent Presidents) as well as the effect of delayed judicial appointments on judicial vacancy levels. The following report addresses these issues, and others, by providing a statistical overview of President Obama's nominees to U.S. circuit court of appeals and U.S. district court judgeships, current through May 31, 2012.
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Pay Equity Legislation

Pay Equity Legislation

Date: June 1, 2012
Creator: Collins, Benjamin
Description: This report gives an overview of "pay equity," a term referring to the fact that women as a group are paid less than men. It includes the history of pay equity, legal and legislative background, and recent legislation.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Abortion Services and Military Medical Facilities

Abortion Services and Military Medical Facilities

Date: June 7, 2012
Creator: Burrelli, David F.
Description: The purpose of this report is to describe and discuss the provisions for providing abortion services to military personnel, their dependents, and other military health care beneficiaries at military medical facilities. The report describes the history of these provisions, with particular emphasis on legislative actions. Finally, this report discusses a number of proposals to modify the law, as well as other related legislative and administrative actions.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Mexican Migration to the United States: Policy and Trends

Mexican Migration to the United States: Policy and Trends

Date: June 7, 2012
Creator: Rosenblum, Marc R.
Description: History and geography have given Mexico a unique status in the U.S. immigration system, and have made the Mexico-U.S. migration flow the largest in the world. Mexicans are the largest group of U.S. migrants across most types of immigration statuses—a fact that may have important implications for how Congress makes U.S. immigration policy. This report reviews the history of immigration policy and migration flows between the countries and the demographics of Mexicans within the United States. It also analyzes contemporary issues in U.S. immigration policy and the impact Mexico may have on U.S. immigration outcomes.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Same-Sex Marriages: Legal Issues

Same-Sex Marriages: Legal Issues

Date: June 8, 2012
Creator: Smith, Alison M.
Description: This report discusses Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and legal challenges to it. It reviews legal principles applied to determine the validity of a marriage contracted in another state and surveys the various approaches employed by states to enable or to prevent same-sex marriage. The report also examines House and Senate resolutions introduced in previous Congresses proposing a constitutional amendment and limiting federal courts' jurisdiction to hear or determine any question pertaining to the interpretation of DOMA.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program

Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program

Date: June 8, 2012
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Description: The Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response Act (the "SAFER Act") was enacted by the 108th Congress as part of the FY2004 National Defense Authorization Act. This report describes the SAFER Act in brief, discusses possible budgetary modifications to the SAFER Act that are being considered due to the recent economic downturn, and explores related issues for the 112th Congress as they consider reauthorization.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department