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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
EPA Policies Concerning Integrated Planning and Affordability of Water Infrastructure
This report examines recent initiatives by EPA, an integrated planning policy and a framework policy for assessing a community's financial capability to meet objectives and requirements of the Clean Water Act (CWA). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795712/
Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of Arctic-related issues for Congress, and refers readers to more in-depth CRS reports on specific Arctic-related issues. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795814/
Iran Nuclear Agreement
This report discusses the recently finalized Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that attempts to ensure that Iran's nuclear program can be used for purely peaceful purposes, in exchange for a broad suspension of U.S. sanctions and a lifting of those sanctions imposed by the European Union (EU) and the United Nations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795827/
Iran's Foreign Policy
This report provides an overview of Iran's foreign policy, which has been a subject of numerous congressional hearings and of sanctions and other legislation for many years. The report contains some specific information on Iran's relations with these countries, but refers to other CRS reports for more detail, particularly on the views of individual countries towards Iran. The report also makes reference to Iran's efforts to utilize its ties to various countries to try to mitigate the effects of U.S. sanctions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795759/
Maritime Territorial and Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) Disputes Involving China: Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and issues for Congress on maritime territorial and exclusive economic zone (EEZ) disputes in the East China (ECS) and South China Sea (SCS) involving China, with a focus on how these disputes may affect U.S. strategic and policy interests. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795656/
Coast Guard Cutter Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and potential oversight issues for Congress on the Coast Guard's programs for procuring 8 National Security Cutters (NSCs), 25 Offshore Patrol Cutters (OPCs), and 58 Fast Response Cutters (FRCs). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795387/
Iran Nuclear Agreement
This report provides background on the agreement negotiated by Iran and six other countries (the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Russia, China, and Germany--collectively known as the P5+1) regarding Iran's nuclear program. They have finalized a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, (JCPOA) that attempts to ensure that Iran's nuclear program can be used for purely peaceful purposes, in exchange for a broad suspension of U.S. sanctions and a lifting of those sanctions imposed by the European Union (EU) and the United Nations. This report discusses the agreement and implications for U.S.-Iran relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743431/
Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of Arctic-related issues for Congress, and refers readers to more in-depth CRS reports on specific Arctic-related issues. Issues such as Arctic sovereignty claims; commercial shipping through the Arctic; Arctic oil, gas, and mineral exploration; endangered Arctic species; and increased military operations in the Arctic could cause the region in coming years to become an arena of international cooperation or competition. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743426/
The Vessel Incidental Discharge Act: Background and Issues
This report discusses the combination of regulations and standards for controlling vessel discharges, which is at issue today and is addressed in legislation in the 114th Congress, the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795810/
Essential Air Service (EAS)
This report discusses Congress' establishment of the Essential Air Service (EAS), a program to ensure that small communities that were served by certificated air carriers before the Airline Deregulation Act of 1978 would continue to receive scheduled passenger service, with subsidies if necessary. Deregulation gave airlines almost total freedom to determine which domestic markets to serve and what airfares to charge, which raised the concern that communities with relatively low passenger levels would lose service as carriers shifted their operations to serve larger and often more profitable markets. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc770631/
Federal Tactical Teams
This report provides a brief overview of the development of tactical teams at the state and local level and the concerns raised by their expansion. It then discusses the composition of these teams in the federal government. It concludes with a discussion of potential issues for policymakers to consider if they take up legislation or conduct oversight related to how the federal government uses tactical teams. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795776/
Drug Testing and Crime-Related Restrictions in TANF, SNAP, and Housing Assistance
This report describes and compares the drug- and crime-related policy restrictions contained in selected federal programs that provide assistance to low-income individuals and families: the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly Food Stamps), and the three primary federal housing assistance programs (the public housing program, the Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher program, and the project-based Section 8 rental assistance program). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743626/
The International Labor Organization (ILO): Background in Brief
This report discusses the International Labor Organization (ILO), and describes the ILO's mission, structure, and functions; presents case studies on how the ILO offers assistance to countries in promoting worker rights; and identifies issues for Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795394/
Mandatory Minimum Sentencing: Federal Aggravated Identity Theft
This report discusses sentencing for aggravated identity theft, which is punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence of imprisonment for two years, or by imprisonment for five years if it relates to a terrorism offense. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743495/
Unaccompanied Alien Children: An Overview
This report opens with an analysis of recent unaccompanied alien children (UAC) apprehension data. It then discusses current policy on the treatment, care, and custody of the population, with a description of the responsibilities of each federal agency involved with the population. The report then discusses both administrative and congressional actions to deal with the UAC surge in FY2014 and ongoing action to address possible future surges. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743466/
Iran, Gulf Security, and U.S. Policy
This report discusses issues regarding Iran's political history and structure. It also takes a look at economic and defense policy responses for Congress, specifically focusing on Iran's nuclear capabilities. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc770582/
Iran Nuclear Agreement: Selected Issues for Congress
This report addresses some of the many issues raised by the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), including: those related to monitoring and enforcing the Iran Nuclear Agreement itself, how the sanctions relief provided by the agreement would affect Iran's regional and domestic policies, the implications for regional security, and the potential for the agreement to change the course of U.S.-Iran relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc770608/
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/metadc743627/
Procedures for Congressional Action in Relation to a Nuclear Agreement with Iran: In Brief
This report provides, in brief, analysis of the congressional procedural provisions laid out in the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015 (P.L. 114-17). The act establishes a period for Congress to review any comprehensive agreement, during which certain presidential actions to provide relief from sanctions on Iran are barred. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc770594/
Iran Sanctions
This report analyzes U.S. and international sanctions against Iran and provides some examples, based on open sources, of companies and countries that conduct business with Iran. U.S. sanctions have been a major feature of U.S.-Iran policy since Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution, but the imposition of U.N. and worldwide bilateral sanctions on Iran that began in 2006 and increased dramatically as of 2010 is recent by comparison. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743354/
National Security Letters in Foreign Intelligence Investigations: A Glimpse at the Legal Background
This report discusses the USA PATRIOT Act (107-56) and its expanded authority to issue national security letters (NSLs). A report by the Department of Justice's Inspector General (IG) found that in its pre-amendment use of expanded USA PATRIOT Act authority the FBI had "used NSLs in violation of applicable NSL statutes, Attorney General Guidelines, and internal FBI policies," but that no criminal laws had been broken. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743553/
Iran Nuclear Agreement
This report discusses the recently finalized Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) that attempts to ensure that Iran's nuclear program can be used for purely peaceful purposes, in exchange for a broad suspension of U.S., European Union (EU), and United Nations sanctions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743453/
Sanctuary Jurisdictions and Criminal Aliens: In Brief
This report examines the interplay between the federal government -- i.e., Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) -- and state and local jurisdictions in enforcing immigration law, with a specific focus on noncitizens who have been convicted of a crime. It briefly outlines the evolution of the cooperation among law enforcement agencies, then discusses current administrative efforts to involve state and local law enforcement, and explores major programs and federal resources available to those agencies that cooperate with ICE to enforce immigration law. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743650/
Mexico: Organized Crime and Drug Trafficking Organizations
This report provides background on drug trafficking and organized crime inside Mexico: it identifies the major DTOs, and it examines how the organized crime "landscape" has been significantly altered by fragmentation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743581/
Airline Passenger Rights: The Federal Role in Aviation Consumer Protection
This report examines aviation consumer protections following the 1978 elimination of most governmental control regarding airline business practices. It explains the roles of Congress and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) in protecting airline consumers, and discusses some major passenger rights issues and related laws and regulations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743368/
FY2016 Agriculture and Related Agencies Appropriations: In Brief
This report discusses the Agriculture appropriations bill, which funds the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), except for the Forest Service, as well as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and, in even-numbered fiscal years, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795673/
Federal Employees' Retirement System: Benefits and Financing
This report discusses the retirement systems in place for federal employees including the Civil Service Retirement System (for employees hired before 1984) and the Federal Employees' Retirement System (for employees hired in 1984 or later). Both programs require participants to contribute toward the cost of their pensions through a payroll tax. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700630/
Iran: U.S. Economic Sanctions and the Authority to Lift Restrictions
This report identifies the legislative bases for sanctions imposed on Iran, and the nature of the authority to waive or lift those restrictions. It comprises two tables that present legislation and executive orders that are specific to Iran and its objectionable activities in the areas of terrorism, human rights, and weapons proliferation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc743622/
Omnibus Appropriations Acts: Overview of Recent Practices
Omnibus appropriations acts have become a significant feature of the legislative process in recent years as Congress and the President have resorted more frequently to their use to bring action on the regular appropriations cycle to a close. Following a discussion of pertinent background information, this report reviews the recent use of such measures and briefly addresses several issues that their use raises. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700755/
State and Local "Sanctuary" Policies Limiting Participation in Immigration Enforcement
This report discusses legal issues related to state and local measures that limit law enforcement cooperation with federal immigration authorities. The report begins by providing a brief overview of the constitutional principles informing the relationship between federal immigration authorities and state and local jurisdictions, including the federal government's power to preempt state and local activities under the Supremacy Clause, and the Tenth Amendment's proscription against Congress directly "commandeering" the states to administer a federally enacted regulatory scheme. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700750/
EPA and the Army Corps' "Waters of the United States" Rule: Congressional Response and Options
This report discusses four legislative options that Congress could consider to halt or redirect the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineer's proposed "waters of the United States" rule. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795894/
Iran's Foreign Policy
This report provides an overview of Iran's foreign policy, which has been a subject of numerous congressional hearings and of sanctions and other legislation for many years. The report analyzes Iranian foreign policy as a whole and by region. The regional analysis discusses those countries where Iranian policy is of U.S. concern. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700919/
EPA and the Army Corps' Rule to Define "Waters of the United States"
This report describes the final revised rule defining the scope of waters protected under the Clean Water Act (CWA)--which the agencies refer to as the Clean Water Rule--and includes a table comparing the existing regulatory language that defines "waters of the United States" with the revisions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc795373/
Greenhouse Gas Pledges by Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
This report briefly summarizes the existing commitments and pledges of selected national and regional governments to limit their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions as contributions to the global effort. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700559/
Procedures for Congressional Action in Relation to a Nuclear Agreement with Iran: In Brief
This report provides, in brief, analysis of the congressional procedural provisions laid out in the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015 (P.L. 114-17). Only provisions relating to congressional actions are covered in this report. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700889/
Iran Sanctions
This report analyzes U.S. and international sanctions against Iran. U.S. sanctions have been a major feature of U.S. Iran policy since Iran's 1979 Islamic revolution, but U.N. and worldwide bilateral sanctions on Iran are a relatively recent (post-2006) development. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700644/
Cuba: Issues for the 114th Congress
This report discusses Cuba's political and economic environment, U.S. policy toward Cuba, and selected issues in U.S.-Cuban relations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689151/
Iran: U.S. Economic Sanctions and the Authority to Lift Restrictions
This report identifies the legislative bases for sanctions imposed on Iran, and the nature of the authority to waive or lift those restrictions. It comprises two tables that present legislation and executive orders that are specific to Iran and its objectionable activities in the areas of terrorism, human rights, and weapons proliferation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689393/
Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of Arctic-related issues for Congress, and refers readers to more in-depth CRS reports on specific Arctic-related issues. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689373/
Maritime Territorial and Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) Disputes Involving China: Issues for Congress
This report considers potential implications for U.S.-China relations. China's actions for asserting and defending its maritime territorial and exclusive economic zone (EEZ) claims in the East China (ECS) and South China Sea (SCS), particularly since late 2013, have heightened concerns among observers that ongoing disputes over these waters and some of the islands within them could lead to a crisis or conflict between China and a neighboring country. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689269/
Iran, Gulf Security, and U.S. Policy
This report discusses issues regarding Iran's political history and structure. It also takes a look at economic and defense policy responses for Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689275/
Insurance Regulation: Background, Overview, and Legislation in the 114th Congress
This report discusses insurance regulatory issues addressed by legislation in the 114th Congress including the degree of the authority of the Federal Reserve and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) over insurers (H.R. 1478/S. 798), international insurance standards (S. 1086 and H.R. 2141), and the licensing of insurance agents and brokers (H.R. 26/P.L. 114-1). digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689158/
EPA and the Army Corps' Proposed "Waters of the United States" Rule: Congressional Response and Options
This report discusses four legislative options that Congress could consider to halt or redirect the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineer's proposed "waters of the United States" rule: the Congressional Review Act, appropriations bill limitations, targeted legislation, and broad amendments to the Clean Water Act. Each option faces a steep path to enactment. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689506/
Invasive Species: Issues in Brief
This report discusses issues for congress regarding whether new legislative authorities and funding are needed to address issues related to invasive species and their increasing economic and ecological impacts on such disparate matters as power plant operations, grazing lands, and coral reef fishes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689465/
The Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS): Waiver Authority and Modification of Volumes
This report discusses the process and criteria for the Environmental Protection Agency to waive various portions of the renewable fuel standard (RFS), and the modification of applicable volumes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689153/
Agricultural Disaster Assistance
This report briefly discusses the federal grand jury, which exists to investigate crimes against the United States and to secure the constitutional right of grand jury indictment. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689485/
Cuba: Issues for the 114th Congress
This report is divided into three major sections analyzing Cuba's political and economic environment, U.S. policy toward Cuba, and selected issues in U.S.-Cuban relations. While legislative initiatives are noted throughout the report where appropriate, a final section of the report provides a listing of bills and resolutions introduced in the 114th Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc626942/
Senate Rule XIV Procedure for Placing Measures Directly on the Senate Calendar
This report discusses the provisions use of Senate Rule XIV, which is used to bypass referral of a bill or joint resolution to a Senate committee, and have the measure placed directly on the Senate Calendar of Business. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc689334/
Transportation Security: Issues for the 114th Congress
This report discusses aviation security, transit and passenger security, port and maritime security. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc626938/
Iran, Gulf Security, and U.S. Policy
This report discusses issues regarding Iran's political history and structure. It also takes a look at economic and defense policy responses for Congress. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc626947/