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  Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
The National Defense Authorization Act for FY2012 and Beyond: Detainee Matters

The National Defense Authorization Act for FY2012 and Beyond: Detainee Matters

Date: January 27, 2014
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K. & Garcia, Michael J.
Description: This report offers a brief background of the salient issues raised by the detainee provisions of the FY2012 NDAA, provides a section-by-section analysis, and discusses executive interpretation and implementation of the act's mandatory military detention provision. It also addresses detainee provisions in the 2013 NDAA and 2014 NDAA.
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Kuwait: Security, Reform, and U.S. Policy

Kuwait: Security, Reform, and U.S. Policy

Date: January 30, 2014
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Description: This report looks at Kuwait's relationships with its neighbors in the Persian Gulf and its own political system which has been in turmoil since 2006.
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Chemical Facility Security: Issues and Options for the 113th Congress

Chemical Facility Security: Issues and Options for the 113th Congress

Date: November 15, 2013
Creator: Shea, Dana A.
Description: This report provides a brief overview of the existing statutory authority and implementing regulation. It describes several policy issues raised in previous debates regarding chemical facility security and identifies policy options for congressional consideration.
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Military Retirement: Background and Recent Developments

Military Retirement: Background and Recent Developments

Date: January 27, 2014
Creator: Burrelli, David F. & Salazar Torreon, Barbara
Description: This report discusses the noncontributory military retirement system which includes monthly compensation and benefits after an active or reserve military career, disability retirement for those physically unfit to continue to serve, and survivor benefits for the eligible survivors of deceased retirees.
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"Leahy Law" Human Rights Provisions and Security Assistance: Issue Overview

"Leahy Law" Human Rights Provisions and Security Assistance: Issue Overview

Date: January 29, 2014
Creator: Serafino, Nina M.; Beittel, June S.; Ploch Blanchard, Lauren & Rosen, Liana
Description: This report provides background on the Leahy laws, including a brief history of their legislative development; an overview guide to the standards and processes used to "vet"--that is, review and clear--foreign military and other security forces for gross violations of human rights; and a brief review of salient issues regarding the provisions of the laws and their implementation.
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U.S. Rail Transportation of Crude Oil: Background and Issues for Congress

U.S. Rail Transportation of Crude Oil: Background and Issues for Congress

Date: February 6, 2014
Creator: Frittelli, John; Parfomak, Paul W.; Ramseur, Jonathan L.; Andrews, Anthony; Pirog, Robert & Ratner, Michael
Description: This report discusses the challenges in the transportation of oil, as refineries that once received crude oil principally from oceangoing tankers are now seeing increasing deliveries by domestic transport. It also outlines possible issues for Congress including rail transport of oil versus pipelines, and the possible increase of oil spills from rail transport.
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Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy

Afghanistan: Post-Taliban Governance, Security, and U.S. Policy

Date: January 17, 2014
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Description: This report discusses the current political state of Afghanistan, focusing particularly on the influence of the Taliban and other militant groups, and on the leadership of Afghan President Hamid Karzai. This report also discusses the U.S.-Afghanistan relationship, in both the short and long term, and U.S. efforts under the Obama Administration to provide military, reconstructive, and stabilization aid.
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Temporary Protected Status: Current Immigration Policy and Issues

Temporary Protected Status: Current Immigration Policy and Issues

Date: January 14, 2014
Creator: Wasem, Ruth Ellen & Ester, Karma
Description: This report is a brief overview of current policies regarding temporatry protected status (TPS), which is relief from removal under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). It includes information about humanitarian migrants, temporary protected status, other blanket forms of relief, nationalities receiving protections, and issues with TPS, as well as recent legislation.
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America COMPETES Acts: FY2008-FY2013 Funding Tables

America COMPETES Acts: FY2008-FY2013 Funding Tables

Date: September 20, 2013
Creator: Gonzalez, Heather B.
Description: This report has been updated to reflect FY2013 funding levels contained in P.L. 113-6 (Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013) and the explanatory statement published in the March 11, 2013.
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The Role of TARP Assistance in the Restructuring of General Motors

The Role of TARP Assistance in the Restructuring of General Motors

Date: January 16, 2014
Creator: Canis, Bill
Description: This report provides background information on General Motors' capital crisis in 2008-2009 and discusses the U.S. government assistance to the motor vehicle industry.
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Trends in Discretionary Spending

Trends in Discretionary Spending

Date: January 24, 2014
Creator: Austin, D. Andrew
Description: This report provides a graphical overview of historical trends in discretionary budget authority (BA) from FY1976 through FY2011, enacted levels for FY2012 spending, and the levels consistent with President Obama's proposals for FY2013 through FY2017. It also includes a background on functional categories and a section discussing historical spending trends.
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Emergency Relief for Disaster Damaged Roads and Transit Systems: In Brief

Emergency Relief for Disaster Damaged Roads and Transit Systems: In Brief

Date: January 28, 2014
Creator: Kirk, Robert S.
Description: This report describes Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) assistance for the repair and reconstruction of highways and bridges damaged by disasters (such as Hurricane Sandy in 2012) or catastrophic failures (such as the collapse of the Skagit River Bridge in 2013). It begins with a brief discussion of the legislative origins of federal assistance and then addresses eligibility issues and program operation.
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Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress

Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress

Date: February 3, 2014
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Description: This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the Virginia-class nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSN) program. The Navy's proposed FY2014 budget requests $5,285.3 million in procurement and advance procurement (AP) funding for the 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.
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State Government Fiscal Stress and Federal Assistance

State Government Fiscal Stress and Federal Assistance

Date: February 14, 2014
Creator: Dilger, Robert Jay
Description: This report examines the current status of state fiscal conditions and the role of federal assistance in state budgets. It begins with an overview of state budgeting procedures and then provides budgetary data comparing state fiscal conditions in FY2008 to FY2013. This report concludes with an assessment of the consequences current levels of state fiscal stress may have for the 113th Congress.
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EPA's Vessel General Permit: Background and Issues

EPA's Vessel General Permit: Background and Issues

Date: January 8, 2014
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: This report is an overview of the revised Vessel General Permit (VGP) from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and two key issues: inclusion of numeric performance standards to limit ballast water discharges from vessels, and controversies about the role of states in regulating vessel discharges.
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United States Fire Administration: An Overview

United States Fire Administration: An Overview

Date: January 23, 2014
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Description: This report describes and analyzes the United States Fire Administration's (USFA's) FY2013 budget proposal, as well as related information and legislation.
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Clean Water Act and Pollutant Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs)

Clean Water Act and Pollutant Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs)

Date: January 17, 2014
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: This report discusses the total maximum daily load (TMDL) program which regulates pollutants to ensure that water quality standards can be attained; section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act requires states to identify waters that are impaired by pollution, even after application of pollution controls. The report focuses on new challenges facing the TMDL program, including more complex TMDLs, larger scale impairments, and nonpoint sources.
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Yemen: Background and U.S. Relations

Yemen: Background and U.S. Relations

Date: February 6, 2014
Creator: Sharp, Jeremy M.
Description: This report provides an overview and analysis of U.S.-Yemeni relations and issues, including evolving political change in Yemeni leadership, ongoing U.S. counterterrorism operations against Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) operatives at large in Yemen's hinterlands, and international efforts to bolster the country's stability despite an array of daunting socio-economic problems.
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Federal Reserve: Unconventional Monetary Policy Options

Federal Reserve: Unconventional Monetary Policy Options

Date: February 6, 2014
Creator: Labonte, Marc
Description: This report discusses the Federal Reserve (Fed) unconventional policies in an attempt to reduced the federal funds rate and revive the economy. The Fed has also changed its communication policies since rates reached the zero bound.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Nuclear Cooperation with Other Countries: A Primer

Nuclear Cooperation with Other Countries: A Primer

Date: January 27, 2014
Creator: Kerr, Paul K. & Nikitin, Mary Beth
Description: 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.
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Tax Reform in the 113th Congress: An Overview of Proposals

Tax Reform in the 113th Congress: An Overview of Proposals

Date: May 6, 2013
Creator: Sherlock, Molly F.
Description: This report provides background information regarding tax reform and discusses ways to make the U.S. tax system simpler, fairer, and more efficient.
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United Nations Reform: Background and Issues for Congress

United Nations Reform: Background and Issues for Congress

Date: January 13, 2014
Creator: Blanchfield, Luisa
Description: This report examines reform priorities from the perspective of several key actors, including Members of Congress, the Obama Administration, selected member states, the U.N. Secretary-General, and a cross-section of groups tasked with addressing U.N. reform. It also discusses congressional actions related to U.N. reform and mechanisms for implementing reform, as well as possible challenges facing U.S. policy makers as they consider existing and future U.N. reform efforts.
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Commercial Filming and Photography on Federal Lands

Commercial Filming and Photography on Federal Lands

Date: October 30, 2013
Creator: Comay, Laura B.
Description: This report discusses the requirements of commercial filming and photography in federal lands, such as national parks, forests, wildlife refuges, ranges, and other landscapes are popular locations for motion pictures and commercial photography
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Constitutional Analysis of Suspicionless Drug Testing Requirements for the Receipt of Governmental Benefits

Constitutional Analysis of Suspicionless Drug Testing Requirements for the Receipt of Governmental Benefits

Date: January 29, 2014
Creator: Carpenter, David H.
Description: This report gives an overview of the issues related to federal or state laws that condition the initial or ongoing receipt of governmental benefits on passing drug tests. These regulations are vulnerable to constitutional challenge, most often due to issues of personal privacy and Fourth Amendment protections against "unreasonable searches."
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department