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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Biofuels Incentives: A Summary of Federal Programs
This report outlines federal programs that provide direct or indirect incentives for biofuels. For each program described, the report provides details including the administering agency, authorizing statute(s), annual funding, and expiration date. The Appendix provides summary information in a table format. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462253/
Environmental Exemptions for the Navy's Mid-Frequency Active Sonar Training Program
This report discusses laws related to the protection of marine mammals when using mid-frequency active sonar including the Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA), the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and the Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA). The report discusses each of the laws generally, and then reviews the litigation surrounding the Navy's compliance with these laws in the context of using the sonar for training purposes off California's coast. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462279/
Mobile Technology and Spectrum Policy: Innovation and Competition
This report traces the current and possible future evolution of mobile communications networks and some of the changes in spectrum policy that might better accommodate innovation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462267/
Jordan: Background and U.S. Relations
This report provides an overview of Jordanian politics and current issues in U.S.-Jordanian relations. It provides a brief discussion of Jordan's government and economy and of its cooperation in promoting Arab-Israeli peace and other U.S. policy objectives in the Middle East. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462280/
The United Arab Emirates (UAE): Issues for U.S. Policy
This report discusses the open economy and society of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), provides a general description of the UAE's government and political structure, and outlines the effects of the recent global economic downturn on the UAE in general and on the city of Dubai in particular. It also describes U.S. concern over the proliferation of advanced technology in relation to a recently-signed U.S.-UAE civilian nuclear agreement, due to the UAE economy and the UAE's lax export controls. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462246/
Commonly Used Motions and Requests in the House of Representatives
This report identifies the most commonly used motions and requests available to Members during proceedings in the House of Representatives. It does not identify motions and requests used when the House is in the Committee of the Whole House on the State of the Union. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462261/
Chile: Political and Economic Conditions and U.S. Relations
This report provides a brief historical background of Chile, examines recent political and economic developments, and addresses issues in U.S.-Chilean relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462271/
Honduran-U.S. Relations
This report examines current political and economic conditions in Honduras as well as issues in Honduran-U.S. relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462225/
Omnibus Appropriations Acts: Overview of Recent Practices
This report discusses Omnibus appropriations acts, which have become a significant feature of the legislative process in recent years as Congress and the President have used them more frequently to bring action on the regular appropriations cycle to a close. Following a discussion of pertinent background information, the report reviews the recent enactment of such measures and briefly addresses several issues raised by their use. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462299/
Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses how Congress should respond to the Navy's proposed force structure and shipbuilding plans. Decisions that Congress makes on this issue could significantly affect future U.S. military capabilities, Navy funding requirements, and the Navy shipbuilding industrial base. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462285/
Nuclear Cooperation with Other Countries: A Primer
This report discusses section 123 of the Atomic Energy Act (AEA), the specific requirements of which must be met in order for the United States to engage in civilian nuclear cooperation with other states. The AEA also provides for exemptions to these requirements, export control licensing procedures, and criteria for terminating cooperation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462256/
Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response: The SAFER Grant Program
This report discusses Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Act, which was enacted by the 108th Congress as Section 1057 of the FY2004 National Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 108-136). It includes background of the SAFER Act, appropriations from FY2009-FY2010, reauthorization of the program in the House and Senate, and information about program implementation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462295/
Drilling in the Great Lakes: Background and Issues
This report provides background information on historical and current drilling practices in the Great Lakes, and statistics on oil and natural gas production, where data are available. It describes state laws regarding drilling in the Great Lakes and analyzes the environmental, socioeconomic, and legal aspects of drilling in or under the Great Lakes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462210/
The Federal Prison Population Buildup: Overview, Policy Changes, Issues, and Options
Since the early 1980s, there has been a historically unprecedented increase in the federal prison population. Some of the growth is attributable to changes in federal criminal justice policy during the previous three decades. An issue before Congress is whether policymakers consider the rate of growth in the federal prison population sustainable, and if not, what changes could be made to federal criminal justice policy to reduce the prison population while maintaining public safety. This report explores the issues related to the growing federal prison population. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462245/
An Overview of the HOME Investment Partnerships Program
This report provides an introduction to the HOME Investment Partnerships Program, including a brief history, an overview of allowable uses of HOME funds, and a description of certain program requirements. It also provides information on funding for the program and how that funding has been used. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462247/
Proposed Funding for Education in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009
This report provides a brief overview of the key provisions related to education programs that are or would be administered by the U.S. Department of Education (ED) that were included in the act under Title IX (Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education) and Title XII (State Fiscal Stabilization Fund). It also provides estimates of state grants for programs for which these estimates are relevant and for which data needed to produce the estimates are available. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462251/
Navy Ohio Replacement (SSBN[X]) Ballistic Missile Submarine Program: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and potential oversight issues for Congress on the Ohio replacement program (ORP), a program to design and build a new class of 12 ballistic missile submarines (SSBNs) to replace the Navy's current force of 14 Ohio-class SSBNs. The Ohio replacement program is also known as the SSBN(X) program. The Navy's proposed FY2013 budget requests $564.9 million for continued research and development work on the Ohio replacement program. Decisions that Congress makes on the Ohio replacement program could substantially affect U.S. military capabilities and funding requirements, and the U.S. shipbuilding industrial base. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462212/
Implementation of Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS): Issues for Congress
This report analyzes data from a variety of Department of Homeland Security (DHS) presentations, testimony, and other sources to present a historical overview of program performance to date. It identifies an ongoing gap between the number of facilities that have received final risk tier assignments and the total number of regulated facilities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462234/
Iraqi and Afghan Special Immigrant Visa Programs
This report analyzes the special immigrant visa (SIV) classifications for Iraqis and Afghans within the context of both the larger Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) special immigrant category and selected other permanent admissions categories. It discusses the legislative changes to the individual Iraqi and Afghan special immigrant programs since their initial authorization, provides statistics on visa issuance, and considers challenges facing the programs today. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462255/
Protection of Trade Secrets: Overview of Current Law and Legislation
This report starts out with background information regarding trade secrets and an overview of current legal landscape for trade secret protection. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462248/
Burma's Political Prisoners and U.S. Sanctions
This report discusses the current issues in Burma (Myanmar) in regards to political prisoners and the resulting U.S. sanctions against the nation. It includes an introduction and definitions; information about current estimates of prisoners and prisoner releases; the relation of political prisoners, parliamentary elections and national reconciliation; and U.S. sanctions and U.S. efforts regarding political prisoners, as well as relevant issues for Congress to consider. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc462201/
The Trans-Pacific Partnership Negotiations and Issues for Congress
This report examines the issues related to the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the state and substance of the negotiations (to the degree that the information is publically available), the specific areas under negotiation, the policy and economic contexts in which the TPP would fit, and the issues for Congress that the TPP presents. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463497/
Federal Permitting and Oversight of Export of Fossil Fuels
This report reviews federal laws and the regulatory regime governing the export of natural gas, crude oil, and coal. This report provides an overview of federal laws and regulations and agency roles in authorizing and regulating the export of these fossil fuels. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463449/
NAFTA at 20: Overview and Trade Effects
This report provides an overview of North American trade liberalization before the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), an overview of NAFTA provisions, the economic effects of NAFTA, and policy considerations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463443/
Ukraine: Current Issues and U.S. Policy
This report offers background information on Ukraine's current political and economic situation. The report covers the country's "intensified dialogue" with NATO regarding membership and also discusses U.S. policy, U.S. aid to Ukraine, the congressional response, and related legislation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463482/
Taiwan: Major U.S. Arms Sales Since 1990
This report discusses U.S. security assistance to Taiwan (calling itself Republic of China (ROC)), including policy issues for Congress and legislation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463459/
Taiwan: Major U.S. Arms Sales Since 1990
This report discusses U.S. security assistance to Taiwan (calling itself Republic of China (ROC)), including policy issues for Congress and legislation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463468/
Marine Protected Areas: An Overview
This report identifies a number of issues related to establishing marine protected areas (MPAs) in the United States. It begins by defining the concept and administrative actions taken to provide spatial protection in marine areas. It then considers some of the key issues and potential benefits and costs of designating additional MPAs. It concludes by summarizing current congressional interest in the topic and legislation proposed during the 110th Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463440/
Spectrum Policy: Provisions in the 2012 Spectrum Act
This report discusses the Spectrum Act, a provision of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012. It includes an overview of the Spectrum Act, the specific policy revisions (deficit reduction, directed auctions, incentive auctions, federal spectrum use and reallocation, and unlicensed spectrum) and a conclusion discussing geographic coverage of spectrum licenses, spectrum caps, and planning for future needs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463470/
Foreign Assistance: Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs)
This report discusses the evolution of private sector involvement in U.S. foreign assistance programs over recent decades, how globalization has driven the modern approach to development partnerships, potential benefits and drawbacks of public-private partnerships (PPPs), and how partnerships are being used by other bilateral donors and multilateral development agencies. The report then discusses partnership-related issues that may be of interest to Congress as part of the foreign assistance authorization and reform process. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463415/
Bangladesh Apparel Factory Collapse: Background in Brief
This report provides an overview of the recent tragedy in Bangladesh and the Bangladesh economic environment and culture. It also notes the responses to the tragedy, to date, from Congress, the Administration, the ILO, the Bangladesh government, and the private sector. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463476/
Economic Stimulus: Issues and Policy
This report discusses the passing of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which included tax cut and spending provisions totaling at a cost of $787 billion in an attempt to mitigate the economic fallout of the housing and financial crises on the general economy. The report examines issues surrounding fiscal stimulus such as timeliness, the magnitude of stimulus, long-term effects and previously adopted policies. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463421/
Counting Regulations: An Overview of Rulemaking, Types of Federal Regulations, and Pages in the Federal Register
This report serves to inform the congressional debate over rulemaking by analyzing different ways to measure federal rulemaking activity. The report provides data on and analysis of the total number of rules issued each year, as well as information on other types of rules, such as "major" rules, "significant" rules, and "economically significant" rules. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463431/
United States Fire Administration: An Overview
This report describes and analyzes the United States Fire Administration's (USFA's) FY2013 budget proposal, as well as related information and legislation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463432/
International Corporate Tax Rate Comparisons and Policy Implications
This report focuses on the global issues relating to tax rate differentials between the United States and other countries. It provides tax rate comparisons; discusses policy implications, including the effect of a corporate rate cut on revenue, output, and national welfare; and discusses the outlook for and consequences of a revenue neutral corporate tax reform. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463460/
U.S. Trade and Investment Relationship with Sub-Saharan Africa: The African Growth and Opportunity Act and Beyond
This report presents perspectives on African economic trends and provides an overview of U.S. trade and investment flows with sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). It discusses the provisions of the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and the changes that have occurred since its enactment. It concludes with a brief discussion of issues of congressional interest. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463418/
Climate Change and Existing Law: A Survey of Legal Issues Past, Present, and Future
This report surveys existing law for legal issues that have arisen, or may arise in the future, on account of climate change and government responses thereto. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463402/
Receipt of Unemployment Insurance by Higher-Income Unemployed Workers ("Millionaires")
This report provides information relevant to proposals that would restrict the payment of unemployment benefits to individuals with high incomes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463474/
The Federal Communications Commission: Current Structure and Its Role in the Changing Telecommunications Landscape
The report discusses the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and related congressional actions in the 112th Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463416/
Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance
This report discusses the current political state of Afghanistan, as well as the Afghan government. This report also discusses Afghanistan's relationship with the United States, particularly U.S. efforts to urge President Hamid Karzai to address corruption within the Afghan government. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463481/
Nuclear Energy Policy
This report discusses nuclear energy issues currently facing Congress, such as federal incentives for new commercial reactors, radioactive waste management policy, research and development priorities, power plant safety and regulation, nuclear weapons proliferation, and security against terrorist attacks. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463413/
Amendments to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Set to Expire February 28, 2010
The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) provides a statutory framework by which government agencies may, when gathering foreign intelligence investigation, obtain authorization to conduct electronic surveillance or physical searches, utilize pen registers and trap and trace devices, or access specified business records and other tangible things. This report discusses three sunsetting amendments of FISA which include the "Lone Wolf" provision, "roving" wiretaps, and access to business records. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463419/
Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and potential issues for Congress on the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), a relatively inexpensive Navy surface combatant equipped with modular "plug-and-fight" mission packages. The Navy's proposed FY2013 budget requests funding for the procurement of four LCSs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463487/
Social Security: Calculation and History of Taxing Benefits
This report discusses the calculations that go into taxing Social Security benefits, which prior to 1984 were exempt from taxation but have since been taxed at gradually increasing levels. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463427/
Strategic Arms Control After START: Issues and Options
The United States and Soviet Union signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty in 1991; it entered into force in December 1994 and expired in December 2009. This report provides background information about the START Treaty and reviews the discussions about a possible successor to START. It also presents a range of alternatives that the United States and Russia might consider if they choose to follow START with a new framework for the arms control process. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463457/
Iraq: Politics, Governance, and Human Rights
This report discusses the state of Iraqi politics, governance, ethnic tension, and human rights in the wake of American withdrawal. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463006/
The Size and Role of Government: Economic Issues
This report discusses some of the arguments surrounding the proper size of government that are economic in nature, including the questions of what role the state plays in economic activity and how the economy is affected by government intervention. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463004/
Social Security Reform: Legal Analysis of Social Security Benefit Entitlement Issues
This report addresses selected legal issues which may be raised regarding entitlement to Social Security benefits as Congress considers possible changes to the Social Security program, and in view of projected long-range shortfalls in the Social Security Trust Funds. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463036/
Nominations to Article III Lower Courts by President George W. Bush During the 110th Congress
This report tracks nominations made by President George W. Bush to judgeships on the U.S. courts of appeals, the U.S. district courts, and the U.S. Court of International Trade — the lower courts on which, pursuant to Article III of the Constitution, judges serve "during good Behaviour." It lists and keeps count of all nominations made to these courts during the 110th Congress, including pertinent actions taken by the Senate Judiciary Committee and the full Senate. It also tracks the number of judicial vacancies on the courts (including vacancies classified by the federal judiciary as "judicial emergencies"), the number of nominations pending to fill the vacancies, and the names of the pending nominees. It presents the number of persons nominated by President Bush to each category of lower Article III court during his entire presidency (breaking down each total to show the number confirmed, pending, returned and not re-nominated, and withdrawn). Last, it provides tabular and graphical comparisons of President Bush's lower court nominee statistics with those of the four Presidents who immediately preceded him. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463022/
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF): Size and Characteristics of the Cash Assistance Caseload
This report examines the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) cash assistance caseload, focusing on how the composition and characteristics of families receiving assistance have changed over time. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc463086/