Congressional Research Service Reports - 36 Matching Results

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Bankruptcy Basics: A Primer
This report serves as a primer for Members and their staffs on the basics of U.S. bankruptcy law. The report provides a brief overview of the most essential concepts necessary for an informed understanding of the U.S. bankruptcy system
The Article V Convention for Proposing Constitutional Amendments: Historical Perspectives for Congress
This report offers perspectives for Congress on the Article V Convention, opening with an overview of the provisions in Article V that established the convention procedure. The report further examines its origins at the Constitutional Convention of 1787; the history of the convention alternative, focusing on three major 20th century campaigns to convene a constitutional convention; and the role of the states in the Article V Convention process.
Legislative Proposals Seek Statutory Protections Related to Removing a Special Counsel
This report discusses the current rules for special counsels investigating executive branch officials and new proposed laws regarding special counsels and the process required to remove one from their position.
The Law and Leaks to the Press
This report discusses laws that govern the legality or possible repercussions of leaking government information of various types to the press.
Mandatory Minimum Sentencing: Federal Aggravated Identity Theft
This report discusses the 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.
Federalism Issues in Surface Transportation Policy: Past and Present
This report provides a historical perspective on contemporary federalism issues in surface transportation policy that are likely to be addressed by Congress during the 111th Congress, including possible devolution of programmatic responsibility to states and proposals to change state maintenance-of-effort requirements and state cost matching requirements.
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.
An Analysis of the Regulatory Burden on Small Banks
This report explains the concept of regulatory burden and the different ways it can be manifested. It analyzes whether small banks are relatively more burdened by regulation than big banks. To help answer that question, the report looks at the relative treatment of small and large banks in recent major regulatory proposals.
Pay Equity: Legislative and Legal Developments
This report discusses pay equity litigation, including Wal-Mart Stores v. Dukes, a case in which the Supreme Court rejected class action status for current and former female Wal-Mart employees who allege that the company has engaged in pay discrimination.
Nonimmigrant Overstays: Brief Synthesis of the Issue
This report discusses a fundamental problem of immigration control in which foreign nationals enter legally on a temporary basis and continue to stay after their visas expire.
Federal Deposit Insurance for Banks and Credit Unions
This report provides an overview of the FDIC and the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), the status of the Deposit Insurance Fund (DIF) and National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF), and the resolution procedures that are implemented when depository institutions fail.
A Primer on U.S. Immigration Policy
This report provides a broad overview of U.S. immigration policy. The first section addresses policies governing how foreign nationals enter the United States either to reside permanently or to stay temporarily. The second section discusses enforcement policies for excluding foreign nationals from admission into the United States, as well as for detaining and removing those who enter the country unlawfully or who enter lawfully but subsequently commit crimes that make them deportable. The third section addresses policies for unauthorized aliens residing in the United States.
Public Trust and Law Enforcement--A Brief Discussion for Policymakers
This report provides a brief overview of police-community relations and how the federal government might be able to promote more accountability and better relationships between citizens and law enforcement.
The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA): Policies, Programs, and Funding
Report on the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), which is an agency of the Department of Commerce set up to advise on domestic and international telecommunications and information policies.
The Crime Victims Fund: Federal Support for Victims of Crime
Report that provides background and funding information for Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) programs and the Crime Victims Fund (CVF). It describes the process through which CVF funds are allocated and explains how the CVF impacts the annual budget for Department of Justice (DOJ).
House and Senate Floor and Committee Action to Reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act: 1966 to Present
The report provides vote information on comprehensive Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) reauthorization bills that have been considered in the committees of jurisdiction or on the House or Senate floors since the enactment of No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (NCLB).
The "Volcker": Proposals to Limit "Speculative" Proprietary Trading by Banks
This report briefly discusses the permissible proprietary trading activities of commercial banks and their subsidiaries under current law. It then analyzes the Volcker Rule proposals under both the House- and Senate-passed financial reform bills.
Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) Status for Russia and U.S.-Russian Economic Ties
This report discusses the issues surrounding whether or not the U.S. should grant Russia permanent normal trade relations (PNTR) following its accession into the World Trade Organization (WTO). The change in Russia's trade status will require legislation to lift the restrictions of Title IV of the Trade Act of 1974 as they apply to Russia, which includes the "freedom-of-emigration" requirements of the Jackson-Vanik amendment.
Achievements of and Outlook for Sanctions on Iran
This report analyzes the effect that sanctions have had in contributing to the achievement of U.S. objectives on Iran and analyzes several scenarios that might affect whether sanctions are eased or increased, or that might affect the effectiveness of the sanctions. It briefly reviews the imposition of sanctions, both by the United States and the international community, and discusses their stated objectives.
Funeral Protests: Selected Federal Laws and Constitutional Issues
This report discusses the Supreme Court's decision in Snyder vs. Phelps, which deals with the question of Westboro Baptist Church's tort liability, a church that has protested military funerals for a number of years. It analyzes the constitutional issues facing federal laws that create funeral protest buffer zones and examines legislative options for amending the federal laws restricting funeral protests, including H.R. 961.
Energy Tax Policy: Issues in the 114th Congress
This report begins by providing background on the economic rationale for energy market interventions, highlighting various market failures. After identifying possible market failures in the production and consumption of energy, possible interventions are discussed. The report concludes with an analysis of the current status of energy tax policy.
Unauthorized Aliens Residing in the United States: Estimates Since 1986
This report discusses a rise in the unauthorized resident ("illegal") alien population from 1986 to 2010. It looks at reasons that illegal aliens stay resort to breaking the law and how illegal aliens affect the workforce in certain industries.
International Criminal Court Cases in Africa: Status and Policy Issues
The International Criminal Court (ICC) has, to date, opened cases exclusively in Africa. Cases concerning 25 individuals are open before the Court, pertaining to crimes allegedly committed in six African states: Libya, Kenya, Sudan (Darfur), Uganda (the Lord's Resistance Army, LRA), the Democratic Republic of Congo, and the Central African Republic. This report provides background on current ICC cases and examines issues raised by the ICC's actions in Africa.
The Federal Communications Commission: Current Structure and Its Role in the Changing Telecommunications Landscape
This report discusses current issues regarding the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), which is an independent federal agency charged with regulating interstate and international communications by radio, television, wire, satellite, and cable. The mission of the FCC is to ensure that the American people have available--at reasonable cost and without discrimination--rapid, efficient, nation- and world-wide communication services, whether by radio, television, wire, satellite, or cable.
U.S. Crude Oil and Natural Gas Production in Federal and Nonfederal Areas
This report examines U.S. oil and natural gas production data for federal and non-federal areas with an emphasis on the past five fiscal years of production.
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). The Coast Guard's proposed FY2017 budget requests a total of $467 million in acquisition funding for the three programs.
The Technology Innovation Program
This report discusses the Technology Innovation Program (TIP) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which is designed "to support, promote, and accelerate innovation in the United States through high-risk, high-reward research in areas of critical national need," according to the authorizing legislation. Grants are provided to small and medium-sized firms for individual projects or joint ventures with other research organizations.
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.
Unauthorized Alien Students: Issues and “DREAM Act” Legislation
This report discusses the "DREAM Act", a measure to enable certain unauthorized alien students to legalize their status, as well as related issues.
Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of Arctic-related issues for Congress 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, and refers readers to more in-depth CRS reports on specific Arctic-related issues.
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.
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.
Maritime Territorial and Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) Disputes Involving China: Issues for Congress
This report presents policy and oversight issues for Congress arising from (1) maritime territorial disputes involving China in the South China Sea (SCS) and East China Sea (ECS) and (2) an additional dispute over whether China has a right under international law to regulate U.S. and other foreign military activities in its 200-nautical-mile maritime Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).
Iran's Economic Conditions: U.S. Policy Issues
This report provides a general overview of Iran's economy, addresses related U.S. policy concerns, and discusses policy options for Congress. The purpose of this report is two-fold. First, it provides insight into important macroeconomic trends, policy reforms and objectives, key economic sectors, international trade patterns, and sources of foreign exchange. Second, in the context of U.S. economic sanctions imposed for national security and foreign policy reasons, it evaluates Iran's economic structure, strengths, and vulnerabilities and discusses issues and options for Congress.
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 such as Japan, the Philippines, or Vietnam.
Iran Sanctions
This report focuses on the United States' relationship with Iran and how the Obama Administration is handling prior administrations' economic sanctions against Iran. However, with subsequent negotiations yielding no firm Iranian agreement to compromise regarding their nuclear program, the Administration has focused on achieving the imposition of additional U.N., U.S., and allied country sanctions whose cumulative effect would be to compel it to accept a nuclear bargain