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  Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Iran-U.S. Air Service Not Imminent
This report discusses the prospect of bilateral air service between Iran and the United States to resume, after the July 2015 agreement in which Iran accepted strict limits on its nuclear program.
Israel: Background and U.S. Relations In Brief
This report focuses on the following: Recent dynamics in U.S.-Israel relations, U.S.-Israel next steps following the July 2015 Iranian nuclear deal, regional threats Israel perceives from Hezbollah, Syria, and elsewhere, recently intensified Israeli-Palestinian tensions and violence in connection with Jerusalem's holy sites, and domestic political developments in Israel.
Cuba: Issues for the 109th Congress
This report discusses U.S.-Cuba relations since the early 1960s. There are several schools of thought on how to achieve the objective of bringing democracy and respect for human rights to Cuba: some advocate maximum pressure on Cuba until reforms are enacted; others argue for lifting some U.S. sanctions judged to be hurting the Cuban people; and still others call for a swift normalization of U.S.-Cuban relations.
Federal Personnel: Conversion of Employees from Appointed (Noncareer) Positions to Career Positions in the Executive Branch
This report discusses the conversion of employees from appointed (noncareer) positions to career positions in the executive branch. This practice, commonly referred to as "burrowing in," is permissible when laws and regulations governing career appointments are followed.
Middle East Elections 2009: Lebanon, Iran, Afghanistan, and Iraq
This report provides an overview of the election contests in Lebanon, Iran, Afghanistan, and Iraq, including possible outcomes and implications for U.S. policy. The strategic influence of Iran in the Middle East, the stability of Iraq, and the ongoing war in Afghanistan are at the forefront of U.S. policy and Congressional interest in the region.
Japan-U.S. Relations: Issues for Congress
This report discusses issues regarding U.S.-Japan economic relations. Japan is a significant partner of the United States in a number of foreign policy areas, particularly in U.S. security priorities, which range from hedging against Chinese military modernization to countering threats from North Korea.
Navy Ford (CVN-78) Class Aircraft Carrier Program: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and potential oversight issues for Congress on the Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) class aircraft carrier program. Congress's decisions on the CVN-78 program could substantially affect Navy capabilities and funding requirements and the shipbuilding industrial base.
2015 Leaders' Summit on U.N. Peacekeeping
This report discusses the outcome of the 2015 Leaders' Summit on U.N. Peacekeeping, which might elevate ongoing congressional interest in several policy issues related to U.N. peacekeeping.
Federal Affirmative Action Law: A Brief History
This report provides a brief history of federal affirmative action law, including legal and political developments at the federal, state, and local levels. It describes the origins, affirmative action in public education, minority contracting, and recent developments as of 2015.
Medicaid and Schools
This report discusses the recent history and current issues facing Medicaid funding for certain health related costs under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA).
Turkmenistan: Recent Developments and U.S. Interests
This report examines Turkmenistan's halting economic and political reforms under the authoritarian leadership of President Saparmurad Niyazov. It discusses U.S. policy and assistance, including support for grassroots democratization and advocacy for human rights, and provides basic facts and biographical information.
U.S. Natural Gas Exports and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement
On October 5, 2015, President Obama announced the conclusion of negotiations for the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a free trade agreement (FTA) among the United States and 11 other Asia-Pacific nations - Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam. This report briefly discusses the agreement and its potential effects.
France: Efforts to Counter Islamist Terrorism and the Islamic State
This report discusses the commitment of French government to counter Islamist terrorism as the chief security threat facing the country.
Eleventh Circuit Provides Guidance for the Definition of "Foreign Official" under the FCPA
This legal sidebar discusses the opinion of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in United States v. Esquenazi, which is the first federal appellate court decision to provide guidance for and to flesh out the definition of the term "foreign official" under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA or Act).
Department of Veterans Affairs FY2016 Appropriations: In Brief
This report discusses budget issues for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), which provides a range of benefits and services to veterans who meet certain eligibility rules.
Puerto Rico and Health Care Finance: Frequently Asked Questions
This report provides answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) about Puerto Rico's health care system, including how federal health care programs (Medicare, Medicaid, and the State Children's Health Insurance Program [CHIP]) and private health insurance requirements apply to Puerto Rico.
Are Carbon Dioxide Emissions Rising More Rapidly Than Expected?
This report discusses the recent emissions estimates with the greenhouse gas (GHG) and addresses the question, are carbon dioxide emissions rising more rapidly than expected?
Open Ocean Aquaculture
This report discusses four general areas: (1) operational and business-related challenges; (2) potential environmental impacts; (3) potential economic impacts; and (4) the legal and regulatory environment. It then summarizes recent executive and legislative actions.
The Chinese Military: Overview and Issues for Congress
This report provides a brief overview of the Chinese military. In order to cover a wide range of issues in a concise format, the report does not go into great depth on many topics and omits other topics that might be considered germane.
Underground Carbon Dioxide Sequestration: Frequently Asked Questions
This report answers frequently asked questions about the geologic sequestration of carbon dioxide (CO2). The questions are broadly representative of typical inquiries regarding the process and mechanics of storing CO2 underground, how much might be stored, and what might happen to CO2 once it is injected underground.
U.S. Special Operations Forces (SOF): Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses Special Operations Forces (SOF), which play a significant role in U.S. military operations and have been given greater responsibility for planning and conducting worldwide counterterrorism operations. It outlines potential policy issues for congressional consideration.
U.S. National Science Foundation: Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR)
This report discusses current policy involving the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) of the National Science Foundation (NSF), as well as budget requests.
Stability in Russia's Chechnya and Other Regions of the North Caucasus: Recent Developments
This report provides background information on terrorist attacks in Russia's North Caucasus, which appeared to increase substantially in 2007-2009. The report discusses impact of the August 2008 Russia-Georgia conflict and the recent development in the Northern Caucasus.
Irrigation in U.S. Agriculture: On-Farm Technologies and Best Management Practices
This report is intended to provide an overview of on-farm irrigation and does not cover storage and conveyance prior to the farm or how irrigation adoption may alter other farm practices, such as the use of fertilizers and pesticides or impacts off-farm (e.g., groundwater and surface water quality concerns).
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.
Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies: FY2009 Appropriations
This report examines various aspects of H.R. 1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), otherwise known as the "economic stimulus," passed by both chambers and enacted by President Barak Obama on February 17, 2009.
House Rules Affecting Committees
This report identifies and summarizes the provisions of the House of Representatives' standing rules and certain other directives that affect committee powers, authority, activities, and operations. It is organized under seven headings: (1) general, (2) establishment and assignments, (3) hearings, markups, and other meetings, (4) reporting, (5) oversight and investigations, (6) funding, staff, and travel, and (7) other duties.
Section 811 and Other HUD Housing Programs for Persons with Disabilities
This report describes how federal funds are used to develop housing designated for persons with disabilities. It also discusses current issues surrounding housing for persons with disabilities.
Puerto Rico's Current Fiscal Challenges
This report discusses multiple challenges the government of Puerto Rico faces in the fall of 2015. Concerns regarding the sustainability of Puerto Rico's public finances have intensified over the past year, despite several measures taken by the island's government to reduce spending, increase revenues, and restructure its obligations. The Puerto Rican government outlined a medium-term strategy to address those challenges in a fiscal plan put forth in mid-September 2015.
Syrian Refugee Admissions and Resettlement in the United States: In Brief
To assist Congress in addressing issues related to Syrian refugees and U.S. refugee policy generally, this report details the U.S. refugee admissions process and the placement and resettlement of arriving refugees in the United States.
Historic Preservation: Background and Funding
This report summarizes the federal role in historic preservation. It provides descriptions of and funding information for some of the major preservation programs, including the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF), the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, and the National Register for Historic Places. Some Members of Congress have given historic preservation programs close scrutiny and have recommended that historic preservation activities be supported increasingly by the private sector.
"Fast Track" Parliamentary Procedures of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
This report examines the procedures of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (Division A of H.R. 1424, P.L. 110-343) and explains how they differ from the regular parliamentary mechanisms of the House and Senate. It will be updated as needed.
Conservation Compliance and U.S. Farm Policy
This report discusses various provisions designed to reduce production and conserve soil and water resources. Many of the provisions remain in effect today, including the two compliance provisions--highly erodible land conservation (sodbuster) and wetland conservation (swampbuster).
"Fast Track" Procedures to Disapprove Additional Funds Under the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act
This report examines the procedures of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (EESA, Division A of H.R. 1424, P.L. 110-343) and explains how they differ from the regular parliamentary mechanisms of the House and Senate. It also estimates certain deadlines under the act based on the recent submission of the President's report.
U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea: Living Resources Provisions
This report describes provisions of the LOS Convention relating to living marine resources and discusses how these provisions comport with current U.S. marine policy.
Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the Virginia-class nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSN) program. Decisions that Congress makes on procurement of Virginia-class boats could substantially affect U.S. Navy capabilities and funding requirements, and the U.S. shipbuilding industrial base.
Reauthorization of the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC): Opportunity to Reexamine the Congressionally Mandated Antitrust Exemption for Ocean Liner Carriers?
The focus of this report is on the commercial aspects of the U.S. liner trade. The report discusses the historical rationale for shipping conferences and legislative history of U.S. shipping law.
Open Ocean Aquaculture
This report discusses open ocean aquaculture, which is defined as the rearing of marine organisms under controlled conditions in exposed, high-energy ocean environments beyond significant coastal influence, is one possible option for meeting increasing consumer demand for marine products and offering new and alternative employment opportunities.
Expedited Removal Authority for VA Senior Executives (38 U.S.C. ยง 713): Selected Legal Issues
This report discusses selected legal issues relating to the authority for summary removal of individuals in senior executive positions at the Department of Veterans Affairs.
Navy Ship Names: Background for Congress
This report discusses the process of naming Navy ships, which have traditionally been chosen and announced by the Secretary of the Navy. Rules for giving certain types of names to certain types of Navy ships have evolved over time.
The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000: Forest Service Payments to Counties
This report describes the issues that Congress has debated relating to The Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act of 2000 (P.L. 106-393), which may again arise when the program expires in 2011, and explains the changes enacted for the program.
Campaign Financing: Highlights and Chronology of Current Federal Law
This report summarizes major provisions of federal law and offers a chronology of key legislative and judicial actions which govern financial activity of federal election campaigns. The laws are based on two principal statutes: the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA) of 1971, as amended in 1974, 1976, 1979, and 2002, and the Revenue Act of 1971.
Elections in Haiti
This report briefly discusses various issues regarding the election process in Haiti. Haiti is in the midst of a national election cycle to fill all 119 seats in the Chamber of Deputies, 20 seats in the 30-seat Senate, and most municipal offices - and to elect a new president.
In Re Terrorist Attacks on September 11, 2001: Dismissals of Claims Against Saudi Defendants Under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA)
This report summarizes the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) and jurisdiction in cases against foreign defendants and analyzes the recent court of appeals decision. This report examines the legal bases for those dismissals.
U.S. Agent Orange/Dioxin Assistance to Vietnam
This report discusses U.S. assistance to Vietnam for the environmental and health damage attributed to a dioxin contained in Agent Orange and other herbicides sprayed over much of the southern portion of the country during the Vietnam War, which remains a major issue in bilateral relations.
Haiti: Post-Hurricane Conditions and Assistance
This report discusses U.S. and international disaster assistance to Haiti following storms in August and September 2008 which caused widespread devastation.
Federal Aid for Reconstruction of Houses of Worship: A Legal Analysis
This report examines the constitutional rules governing federal funding for religious buildings and analyzes the Court's previous decisions on this issue. It also analyzes more recent lower court and administrative opinions that have distinguished the Court's decisions and allowed public funds to be awarded to houses of worship.
Navy F/A-18E/F and EA-18G Aircraft Procurement and Strike Fighter Shortfall: Background and Issues for Congress
This report discusses the Navy's proposed FY2010 budget requests (about $1.0 billion) for the procurement of 22 F/A- 18E/F Super Hornet strike fighters and about $1.6 billion for the procurement of 12 EA-18G Growler electric attack aircraft. The issue for Congress is whether to approve, reject, or modify the Navy's FY2010 funding request for procurement of nine F/A-18E/Fs, and whether to approve a third MYP arrangement for procuring Super Hornets and Growlers in FY2010-FY2014.
Electing the Speaker of the House of Representatives: Frequently Asked Questions
This report briefly poses and answers several "frequently asked questions" in relation to the floor proceedings used to elect a Speaker of the House. Current practice for electing a Speaker, either at the start of a Congress or in the event of a vacancy, is by roll-call vote, during which Members state aloud the name of their preferred candidate.
The Debt Limit Since 2011
This report discusses the federal debt increase, which can increase when the government sells debt to the public to finance budget deficits and acquire the financial resources needed to meet its obligations (increasing debt held by the public), or when the federal government issues debt to certain government accounts in exchange for their reported surpluses (increasing debt held by government accounts).