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 Decade: 1990-1999
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Attorneys' Fees in the State Tobacco Litigation Cases
In the past few years, many states have filed complaints against the tobacco industry in state court to recover Medicaid costs paid by the states to treat their citizens for tobacco related illnesses. The states are also attempting to recover other damages, such as punitive damages, against the tobacco industry. For various reasons, the states have hired private attorneys to assist the state Attorneys General in prosecuting these cases. In most cases, the retention of private counsel has included a fee agreement specifying the amount of compensation that these attorneys will receive for their services. These agreements are not uniform among the states, but most tend to provide some form of contingency fee arrangement. Some of these states have developed a sliding scale contingency fee schedule which varies with the amount of time spent on the litigation and whether a trial has begun. This report briefly summarizes the different fee agreements that the states have with private counsel.
The U.S. Tobacco Industry in Domestic and World Markets
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Tobacco Legislation in the 105th Congress: Side-by-Side Comparison of S. 1415, S. 1530, S. 1638, S. 1889, H.R. 3474, and H.R. 3868
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Cattle Prices: Questions and Answers
After 7 years of relatively high returns, cattle producers by 1994 were experiencing steeply falling prices--mainly caused by abundant supplies of cattle destined for U.S. feedlots. Record-high grain prices and dry pastures amplified the problem. Because of the lengthy biological cycle governing cattle production, large numbers will be coming onto the market for some time, as producers undertake the slow process of curtailing herd expansion.
Japan: Resale Price Maintenance
Resale price maintenance occurs when manufacturers control the prices charged by wholesalers or retailers of their products. In Japan, such activities are prohibited, although certain exemptions are allowed. The U.S. concern over the practice is that it could allow Japanese firms to generate a secure profit base in their home market in order to finance aggressive price competition abroad.
Japanese Companies and Technology: Lessons to Learn?
American companies are facing increased competitive pressures from foreign firms. Many observers feel that U.S. firms lag behind their foreign competitors in the development, application, and marketing of new technologies and techniques. The Japanese industrial enterprise is characterized by a large proportion of private sector financing and many other factors, which this report analyzes at length. The question being debated by Congress is whether or not U.S. government programs and policies are an acceptable and effective means of supporting the efforts of American industries to operate in a manner consistent with success in world markets.
Japan-U.S. Trade: The Construction Services Issue
This report discusses the issues of the U.S.-Japanese trade relations of the Reagan and Bush Administrations, and the Clinton Administration.
Competitiveness: Economic Issue or Illusion?
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General Overview of United States Antitrust Law
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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. This report discusses the ATP and related issues of federal appropriations (or the lack thereof).
Small Business Innovation Research Program
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The Work Opportunity Tax Credit: A Fact Sheet
The 104th Congress replaced the Targeted Jobs Tax Credit (TJTC, 1978-1994) with the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) in section 1201 of the Small Business Job Protection Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-188). This document provides basic facts about the WOTC.
China: Commission of Science, Technology, and Industry for National Defense (COSTIND) and Defense Industries
Congressional interest in the Chinese military, or People’s Liberation Army (PLA), has increased as a result of the March 1996 tensions in the Taiwan Strait, continuing allegations of Chinese proliferation of technology useful in weapons of mass destruction, and reports that some Chinese defense-related corporations have circumvented U.S. export controls to acquire dual-use technology. The Commission of Science, Technology, and Industry for National Defense (COSTIND), an important, high-level PLA organization, plays a role in China’s weapon programs, sales of civilian goods, acquisition of military technology, and arms sales and export controls. The purpose of this CRS Report is to examine the origins and command, roles, and influence of COSTIND.
Summary and Comparison of the Major Agricultural Provisions of the Tobacco Settlement Policy Proposals
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The Proposed Tobacco Settlement: Who Pays for the Health Costs of Smoking?
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The Abandoned Mine Land Fund: Grants Distribution and Issues
The Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA, P.L. 95-87), enacted in 1977, established reclamation standards for all coal surface mining operations, and for the surface effects of underground mining. It also established the Abandoned Mine Land (AML) program to promote the reclamation of sites mined and abandoned prior to the enactment of SMCRA. To finance reclamation of abandoned mine sites, the legislation established fees on coal production. These collections are divided into federal and state shares; subject to annual appropriation, AML funds are distributed annually to states with approved reclamation programs. This report describes the distribution of these funds and the various issues that arise from said distribution.
The Tobacco Settlement: An Overview
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The Proposed Tobacco Settlement: Effects on Prices, Smoking Behavior, and Income Distribution
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Compensating Farmers for the Tobacco Settlement
The legislative proposals designed to reduce smoking, primarily by teenagers, are likely to have negative economic consequences for tobacco growers and tobacco-dependent communities. This report discusses the possibility of some kind of compensation to farmers as part of the settlement package legislation.
Legal Analysis of the 10% Disadvantaged Small Business Set-Aside Provisions of H.R. 2400, the "Building Efficient Surface Transportation and Equity Act of 1997"
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Industrial Competitiveness and Technological Advancement: Debate Over Government Policy
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Defense Industry in Transition: Issues and Options for Congress
The U.S. government and the defense industry continued to adjust to the post-Cold War era. Complicating the transition was the restructuring of the U.S. and other industrialized economies, and questions concerning the future direction of U.S. defense policy. The 104th Congress grappled with how to ensure that the U.S. retained a smaller, but capable, defense industry.
Manufacturing, Technology, and Competitiveness
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The Tobacco Settlement: Issues
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Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement (1998): Overview, Implementation by States, and Congressional Issues
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Electricity Restructuring Background: Public Utility Holding Company Act of 1935 (PUHCA)
This report provides background information on PUHCA, including its history and impact. It also discusses how PUHCA reform fits into the current electric utility industry restructuring debate. This report will be updated as events warrant. For related information on electricity restructuring, see the CRS Electronic Briefing Book.
Monopoly and Monopolization - Fundamental But Separate Concepts in U.S. Antitrust Law
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Federal Regulatory Structure for Egg Safety: Fact Sheet
This report discusses the federal role in regulating egg safety. Although the egg industry is primarily responsible for ensuring the safety of its products, four federal agencies hold statutory responsibilities for egg safety.
Online Privacy Protection: Issues and Developments
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Renewable Energy and Electricity Restructuring
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Small Business Administration: Overview and Issues
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Privatizing the United States Enrichment Corporation
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Toxics Release Inventory: Do Communities Have a Right to Know More?
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Business and Labor Spending in U.S. Elections
Federal election law has long prohibited corporate and union spending in federal elections, but distinctions in statutes and judicial rulings have opened avenues by which these groups have been able to spend money in the electoral process. Business groups make particular use of political action committee (PAC) donations to candidates and soft money donations to parties. Unions made prominent use of issue advocacy in 1996, but labor’s political strength lies in exempt activity communications with members. This report explains these tools and their use in today’s elections.
The Federal Helium Program: The Reaction Over an Inert Gas
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Federal Land Management: Appeals and Litigation
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The Department of Energy's Tritium Production Program
Tritium is a radioactive isotope of hydrogen used to enhance the explosive yield of every thermonuclear weapon. Tritium has a radioactive decay rate of 5.5% per year and has not been produced in this country for weapons purposes since 1988.
Federal Land Ownership: Constitutional Authority; the History of Acquisition, Disposal, and Retention; and Current Acquisition and Disposal Authorities
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Ideas for Privatizing Social Security
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Interstate Waste Transport: Legislative Issues
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Mandates Information Act: Implications for Congressional Action on Legislation Containing Private Sector Mandates
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Japanese and U.S. Industrial Associations: Their Roles in High-Technology Policymaking
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Internet Tax Bills in the 105th Congress
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Japan-U.S. Automobile and Parts Trade Dispute
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The 1995 Japan-U.S. Auto and Parts Trade Dispute: Terms of the Settlement and Implications
On June 28, 1995, the United States and Japan reached a settlement in a long-running dispute over access to Japan's market for automobiles and parts. 100-percent tariffs by the United States on imports of luxury cars from Japan had been threatened under a Section 301 unfair trade practices case dealing with the aftermarket for autoparts in Japan. This report describes the dispute, the settlement, and questions and issues that still remain.
The Amtrak Reform and Accountability Act of 1997 and Related Developments
The Amtrak Reform and Accountability Act of 1997, enacted December 2, 1997, authorized appropriations to Amtrak through FY2002. This CRS report summarizes the provisions of the Act and discusses related developments.
Stormwater Permits: Status of EPA's Regulatory Program
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Softwood Lumber Imports: The 1996 U.S.-Canada Agreement
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Cigarette Taxes to Fund Health Care Reform: An Economic Analysis
A cigarette excise tax increase of 75 cents per pack has been proposed to finance part of the President's universal health care program. The tax enjoys considerable public support, would raise about $11 billion per year, and would be relatively simple to administer because it would increase an existing manufacturer's excise tax. This report discusses these rationales, as well as other effects of and concerns about the tax, organized into topics of market failure as a justification for the tax (i.e., economic efficiency); potential for revenue; equity; and the job loss the tax might cause in tobacco growing regions.
Cooperative Research and Development Agreements
A Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) is a mechanism established by P.L. 99-602, the Federal Technology Transfer Act, to allow the transfer of technology, knowledge, and expertise from government laboratories to the private sector for further development and commercialization. The government provides support in the way of overhead for research and development performed in the federal laboratory and is prohibited from providing funding directly to the partner in the collaborative effort. Currently, more than 5,000 CRADAs have been signed. As the 105th Congress determines its approach to science and technology policies, the role of CRADAs continues to be debated within the context of federal support for R&D