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Agriculture and Related Agencies: FY2010 Appropriations
This report discusses various policy aspects of the Agriculture appropriations bill for FY2010, which funds the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), except for the Forest Service.
Amendments Between the Houses: Procedural Options and Effects
This report explains the procedural options for resolving differences through amendments between the houses, and to discuss the procedural effects of resolving differences through this process as an alternative to conference committee.
Anaerobic Digestion: Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction and Energy Generation
No Description Available.
Brazil's WTO Case Against the U.S. Cotton Program
This report provides a description and status report on Brazil's challenge to certain aspects of the U.S. cotton program under the rules of the World Trade Organization's (WTO's) dispute settlement process in case DS267. The "Brazil cotton case" had its WTO origins in 2002 and has since evolved into a sprawling legal enterprise that is still ongoing as of mid-2010.
CRS Issue Statement on the Clean Air Act and Air Quality Standards
No Description Available.
The Economic Implications of the Long-Term Federal Budget Outlook
This report analyzes the long-run path of the federal budget. The United States is projected to undergo a demographic shift as the aging of the baby boomers causes an unprecedented increase in the fraction of the population that is retired. Coupled with rising life expectancy, this means, under current policy, a steady increase in the portion of the population that is both out of the workforce and receiving social insurance benefits from the government.
European Union Enlargement: A Status Report on Turkey's Accession Negotiations
This report provides a brief overview of the European Union's (EU) accession process, Turkey's path to EU membership, the impact of the Cyprus problem, and a review of the United States' interest in Turkey's future in the European Union.
Laos: Background and U.S. Relations
This report provides and overview of the political and economical situation in Laos, and discusses the U.S. assistance programs and human rights and humanitarian issues.
Nanotechnology: A Policy Primer
This report provides an overview of nanotechnology, nanomanufacturing, and public understanding of and attitudes toward nanotechnology. Congress has demonstrated continuing support for nanotechnology and has directed its attention primarily to three topics that may affect the realization of this hoped for potential: federal research and development (R&D) in nanotechnology; U.S. competitiveness; and environmental, health, and safety (EHS) concerns.
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.
Transatlantic Regulatory Cooperation: A Possible Role for Congress
This report focuses on the creation of the Transatlantic Economic Council; the role of legislatures in the regulatory process; and the Transatlantic Legislators' Dialogue and its new role as an advisor to transatlantic regulatory efforts.
Uruguay: Political and Economic Conditions and U.S. Relations
This report examines recent political and economic developments in Uruguay as well as issues in U.S.-Uruguayan relations.
Using Army Corps of Engineers Reservoirs for Municipal and Industrial Water Supply: Current Issues
This report discusses the limited use of federal reservoir storage for Municipal and Industrial (M&I) Water and the M&I water storage at corps facilities supply .
WTO Doha Round: Implications for U.S. Agriculture
The Doha Round of multilateral trade negotiations began in November 2001. From an agricultural viewpoint, the goal of the negotiations was to make progress simultaneously across the three pillars of the World Trade Organization’s (WTO’s) Agricultural Agreement—domestic support, market access, and export competition—by building on the specific terms and conditions established during the previous Uruguay Round of negotiations. This report reviews the current status of agricultural negotiations for domestic support, market access, and export subsidies, and their potential implications for U.S. agriculture.
The Americans with Disabilities Act and Emergency Preparedness and Response
This report discusses the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which provides broad nondiscrimination protection for individuals with disabilities in employment, public services, and public accommodations and services operated by private entities. Although the ADA does not include provisions specifically discussing its application to disasters, its nondiscrimination provisions are applicable to emergency preparedness and responses to disasters.
Chinese Tire Imports: Section 421 Safeguards and the World Trade Organization (WTO)
No Description Available.
Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS): Background, Legislation, and Funding
This report discusses the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) program, which was created by Title I of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 (P.L. 103-322). The mission of the COPS program is to advance community policing in all jurisdictions across the United States. Several bills introduced in the 111th Congress would either modify the COPS program, reauthorize appropriations for the program, or both.
Continuing Resolutions: Latest Action and Brief Overview of Recent Practices
No Description Available.
Energy and Water Development: FY2010 Appropriations
This report discusses the Energy and Water Development appropriations bill that provides funding for civil works projects of the Army Corps of Engineers (Corps), for the Department of the Interior's Bureau of Reclamation (Reclamation), the Department of Energy (DOE), and several independent agencies.
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.
Identity Theft: Trends and Issues
This report first provides a brief federal legislative history of identity theft laws. It analyzes the current trends in identity theft, including prevalent identity theft-related crimes, the federal agencies involved in combating identity theft, and the trends in identity theft complaints and prosecutions. The report also discusses the relationship between data breaches and identity theft as well as possible effects of the FTC's Identity Theft Red Flags Rule, effective June 1, 2010.
International Terrorism and Transnational Crime: Security Threats, U.S. Policy, and Considerations for Congress
This report provides a primer on the confluence of transnational terrorist and criminal groups and related activities abroad. It evaluates possible motivations and disincentives for cooperation between terrorist and criminal organizations, variations in the scope of crime-terrorism links, and the types of criminal activities--fundraising, material and logistics support, and exploitation of corruption and gaps in the rule of law--used by terrorist organizations to sustain operations.
North Korea's Nuclear Weapons Development and Diplomacy
This report provides background information on the nuclear negotiations over North Korea's nuclear weapons program that began in the early 1990s under the Clinton Administration. It also provides information on other concerns that the U.S. has with North Korea, and discusses U.S. engagement activities with North Korea.
Public Safety Officers’ Benefits (PSOB) Program
This report discusses the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits (PSOB) program, which provides three different types of benefits to public safety officers and their survivors: a death, a disability, and an education benefit.
Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty: Background and Current Developments
This report discusses the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), which bans all nuclear explosion and was in 1996 adopted by the U.N. General Assembly but rejected by the U.S. Senate in 1997. This report discusses the Obama Administration's stated goal of pursuing U.S. ratification of the CTBT, although the Administration has mainly focused on securing Senate consent to ratification of the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START). This report also discusses other nuclear weapons-related issues as well as the long history of nuclear testing.
CRS Issue Statement on Bankruptcy in a Distressed Economy
No Description Available.
CRS Issue Statement on Surface Transportation
No Description Available.
CRS Issue Statement on the U.S. Postal Service: Finances and Operations
No Description Available.
Current Issues in Patentable Subject Matter: Business Methods, Tax Planning Methods, and Genetic Materials
No Description Available.
Estate Taxes and Family Businesses: Economic Issues
No Description Available.
Follow-On Biologics: Intellectual Property and Innovation Issues
No Description Available.
Intellectual Property in Industrial Designs: Issues in Innovation and Competition
No Description Available.
Iran: U.S. Concerns and Policy Responses
This report discusses the reasons that Iran is considered a threat to U.S. security, including Iran's nuclear program, involvement with terrorist organizations, and involvement with neighboring countries' local governments. The report also discusses ways which the U.S. hopes to modify Iran's behavior with sanctions, and the effectiveness of these sanctions.
North Korea: Terrorism List Removal
This report discusses the issue of North Korea's inclusion on the U.S. list of terrorism-supporting countries that has been a major issue in U.S.-North Korean diplomacy since 2000, particularly in connection with negotiations over North Korea's nuclear program. North Korea demanded that the Clinton and Bush Administration remove North Korea from the terrorism support list. Secretary of State Clinton said on June 7, 2009, that the Obama Administration would consider reinstating North Korea on the list.
Patent Reform in the 111th Congress: Innovation Issues
No Description Available.
Patents on Tax Strategies: Issues in Intellectual Property and Innovation
No Description Available.
Pharmaceutical Patent Litigation Settlements: Implications for Competition and Innovation
No Description Available.
Redirecting Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) Funds to Other Uses
No Description Available.
Terrorism and Security Issues Facing the Water Infrastructure Sector
This report presents an overview of the large and diverse sector of water infrastructure systems, describes security-related actions by the government and private sector since September 11, 2001, and discusses additional policy issues and responses, including congressional interest.
U.S.-China Counterterrorism Cooperation: Issues for U.S. Policy
This report discusses the United States counterterrorism cooperation with China after the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. This effort raised short-term policy issues about how to elicit cooperation and how to address China's concerns about military action (Operation Enduring Freedom). Longer-term questions have concerned whether counterterrorism has strategically transformed bilateral relations and whether China's support has been valuable and not obtained at the expense of other U.S. interests.
Antibiotic Use in Agriculture: Background and Legislation
No Description Available.
Broadband Infrastructure Programs in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act
No Description Available.
Critical Infrastructure Security: CRS Experts
This report contains a table which provides access to names and contact information for CRS experts on policy concerns relating to critical infrastructure security. Policy areas identified include: mission; security services; and specific sectors: assessing vulnerabilities, planning and implementation.
Education of Individuals with Disabilities: The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
No Description Available.
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization: An Overview of Legislative Action in the 111th Congress
This report tracks the status of ongoing legislative action and debate related to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization. It is organized into six major program areas: aviation system finance; airport financing; FAA management and organizational issues; system capacity and safety; environmental issues; and airline industry issues. In several cases, provisions that appear in various unrelated sections of proposed legislation have been rearranged in this report in an effort to group and discuss related items in an issue-driven or programmatic context. Since this report is primarily written as a means of communicating key legislative provisions under consideration in the ongoing FAA reauthorization process, it does not go into detail regarding the specific policy issues behind these legislative proposals.
A Federal Chief Technology Officer in the Obama Administration: Options and Issues for Consideration
This report presents President Obama's vision for the chief technology officer (CTO) position. It also discusses the potential scope of the position's duties, articulates organizational precedents and challenges for the CTO, reviews some of the activities undertaken by Aneesh Chopra during his tenure as CTO, and identifies issues Congress may choose to consider if it opts to exert oversight or to develop legislation to create the position and/or office of the CTO.
Guam: U.S. Defense Deployments
This report discusses the strategic significance of Guam for defense buildup and the force relocation and deployments from the U.S. mainland. It also discusses the concerns and issues for Congress, such as allies and partners, relations with China, and legislation.
Honey Bee Colony Collapse Disorder
This report provides an overview of the importance of honey bee pollination to U.S. agricultural production, especially specialty crops. It describes the extent and symptoms of Colony Colapse Disorder (CCD) and how it differs from previous honey bee colony losses, describing some of the reasons why scientists believe honey bee colonies are being affected by CCD. Finally, the report discusses policy options and actions that Congress has taken to address this issue.
Israel: Background and Relations with the United States
This report provides a historical overview of Israel and it discusses most recent development, politics, economy and relations with United States.
Private Security Contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan: Legal Issues
This report discusses the legal framework that applies to private security contractors (PSCs) in Iraq and Afghanistan. After presenting a general description of the types of law applicable, including international humanitarian law and relevant status of forces agreements, the report addresses some implications of international law and a multilateral proposal for the adoption of international "best practices" regarding the use of PSCs. The report follows up with a discussion of jurisdiction over PSC personnel in U.S. courts, whether federal or military courts, identifying possible means of prosecuting contractor personnel who are accused of violating the law overseas in the context of U.S. military operations, including a listing of known cases that have occurred or are pending. Finally, the report briefly discusses the possible implication of the roles of private security contractors with respect to inherently governmental functions.