Congressional Research Service Reports - Browse

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The Federal Debt: An Analysis of Movements from World War II to the Present

Description: This report will define the measures of debt, discuss the reasons why debt levels change, and use historical examples to illustrate the factors causing debt movements over the last seven decades. Recent policies that have affected the budgetary outlook and the debt will also be discussed. Finally, this report will examine the long-term U.S. debt outlook and implications of rising federal debt levels.
Date: September 17, 2010
Creator: Levit, Mindy R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Homeland Security Department: FY2011 Appropriations

Description: This report describes the FY2011 appropriations for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The Administration requested a net appropriation of $45.0 billion in budget authority for FY2011. This amounts to a $1.1 billion, or a 2.4% increase from the $43.9 billion enacted for FY2010. Total budget authority requested by the Administration for DHS for FY2011 amounts to $52.6 billion as compared to $51.7 billion enacted for FY2010.
Date: October 13, 2010
Creator: Haddal, Chad C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

History of the Joint Committee on Reduction of Non-Essential Federal Expenditures (1941- 1974), with Observations on Oversight Today

Description: This report traces the history of the joint committee and describes the subject matter of some of its principal work products. The report concludes with some considerations involved with the creation of a committee - the purpose of which is to assist Congress in reducing federal spending - and with a brief examination of committee oversight authority extant in House and Senate committees and of alternative mechanisms for cutting spending.
Date: October 26, 2010
Creator: Koempel, Michael L.; Murray, Justin & Tabit, Brian P.J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Financial Services and General Government (FSGG): FY2011 Appropriations

Description: This report discusses the Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) FY2011 appropriations bill, which includes funding for the Department of the Treasury, the Executive Office of the President (EOP), the judiciary, the District of Columbia, and 26 independent agencies, including the Small Business Administration and the United States Postal Service.
Date: October 14, 2010
Creator: Hatch, Garrett
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Location-Based Preferences in Federal and Federally Funded Contracting: An Overview of the Law

Description: This report discusses constitutional and other legal issues related to the creation and implementation of location-based preferences in federal contracting, as well as summarizes key authorities requiring or allowing federal agencies to "favor" contractors located in specific places. The report does not address federal preferences for domestic products or provisions of federal law that could, depending upon their implementation, effectively prefer local contractors, such as project labor agreements.
Date: October 1, 2010
Creator: Luckey, John R. & Manuel, Kate M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) Program: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report discusses the Aegis ballistic missile defense (BMD) program. Under current Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and Navy plans, the number of BMD-capable Navy Aegis ships is schedule to grow from 20 at the end of FY2010 to 38 at the end of FY2015. This report discusses the concerns some have over BMD expansion, as well as BMD funding issues.
Date: September 28, 2010
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Continuing Resolutions: Latest Action and Brief Overview of Recent Practices

Description: This report is divided into two segments. The first section provides the most recent information on the FY2011 continuing resolution. The second segment focuses on the (1) history and recent trends, including the nature, scope, and duration of CRs during the past 35 years; (2) CR types by duration; (3) major substantive legislative provisions included in some CRs; and (4) funding gaps.
Date: October 1, 2010
Creator: Streeter, Sandy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Debt Limit: History and Recent Increases

Description: This report discusses how the total debt of the federal government can increase, an historical overview of debt limits, and how the current economic slowdown has led to higher deficits and thereby a series of debt limit increases, as well as legislation related to these increases.
Date: November 4, 2010
Creator: Austin, D. Andrew & Levit, Mindy R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Coast Guard Deepwater Acquisition Programs: Background, Oversight Issues, and Options for Congress

Description: The term Deepwater refers to a collection of more than a dozen Coast Guard acquisition programs for replacing and modernizing the service's aging fleet of deepwater-capable ships and aircraft. Currently, there are plans to increase and enhance the Coast Guard's fleet through the Deepwater acquisition program. This report details the Coast Guard's budget requests and explains how the Coast Guard has improved its organization and management over the past several years.
Date: October 22, 2010
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Coast Guard Deepwater Acquisition Programs: Background, Oversight Issues, and Options for Congress

Description: The term Deepwater refers to a collection of more than a dozen Coast Guard acquisition programs for replacing and modernizing the service's aging fleet of deepwater-capable ships and aircraft. Currently, there are plans to increase and enhance the Coast Guard's fleet through the Deepwater acquisition program. This report details the Coast Guard's budget requests and explains how the Coast Guard has improved its organization and management over the past several years.
Date: September 29, 2010
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Broadband Internet Access and the Digital Divide: Federal Assistance Programs

Description: Some policymakers, believing that disparities in broadband access across American society could have adverse economic and social consequences on those left behind, assert that the federal government should play a more active role to avoid a "digital divide" in broadband access. One approach is for the federal government to provide financial assistance to support broadband deployment in underserved areas. Others, however, believe that federal assistance for broadband deployment is not appropriate. Some opponents question the reality of the "digital divide," and argue that federal intervention in the broadband marketplace would be premature and, in some cases, counterproductive.
Date: September 23, 2010
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G. & Gilroy, Angele A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Logistical Support Contracts in Iraq and Afghanistan: Issues for Congress

Description: This report will examine logistical support contracts for troop support services (also known as service contracts) in Iraq and Afghanistan, primarily administered through a smaller program, the United States Air Force Contract Augmentation Program (AFCAP) and a larger program, the United States Army's Logistics Civil Augmentation Program (LOGCAP). This report will focus primarily on contracts involving Department of Defense (DOD) appropriated funds, although some projects involve a blending of funds from other agencies.
Date: September 20, 2010
Creator: Grasso, Valerie Bailey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Small Business Administration HUBZone Program

Description: The Small Business Administration (SBA) administers several programs to support small businesses, including the Historically Underutilized Business Zone Empowerment Contracting (HUBZone) program. The HUBZone program is a small business federal contracting assistance program "whose primary objective is job creation and increasing capital investment in distressed communities." This report examines the arguments presented both for and against targeting assistance to geographic areas with specified characteristics, such as low income, high poverty, or high unemployment, as opposed to providing assistance to people or businesses with specified characteristics. It then assesses the arguments presented both for and against the creation and continuation of the HUBZone program.
Date: October 15, 2010
Creator: Dilger, Robert Jay
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Surface Transportation Funding and Finance

Description: This report discusses changes in funding to the national surface transportation infrastructure, especially in light of the recession that began in 2007, which led to decreases in driving and fuel use. This report focuses on possible revenue sources for surface transportation infrastructure. It begins with a brief discussion of the problems associated with the trust fund financing system and then explores possible immediate and longer-term solutions to the financing problem.
Date: November 10, 2010
Creator: Fischer, John W; Kirk, Robert S. & Mallett, William J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Nuclear-Powered Surface Ships: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress

Description: This report discusses the possibility of increasing the number of Navy surface ships powered by nuclear energy, including the Navy's planned CG(X) cruiser. The report explores a 2006 Navy study that discusses budget considerations, the cost of a nuclear-powered ship compared to a ship powered by crude oil, and other suggestions relating to this proposed expansion. The overall report has a specific emphasis on the planned CG(X) cruiser, and how the implementation of this cruiser may be delayed by current budget proposals.
Date: September 29, 2010
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The TANF Emergency Contingency Fund

Description: The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 created an Emergency Contingency Fund (ECF) within the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) block grant. The fund expired on September 30, 2010. It helped states, Indian tribes, and territories pay for additional costs of providing economic aid to families during the current economic downturn for FY2009 and FY2010. This report describes the TANF ECF as well as proposals offered in 2010 to extend and modify TANF emergency funding.
Date: October 6, 2010
Creator: Falk, Gene
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. National Science Foundation: Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR)

Description: The Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) of the National Science Foundation (NSF) was authorized by Congress in 1978, partly in response to concerns in Congress and the concerns of some in academia and the scientific community about the geographic distribution of federal research and development (R&D) funds. Some have questioned the length of time states should receive EPSCoR support. It continues to be called an experimental program after 28 years, and observers have noted that no state has yet to graduate, or leave the program. This report discusses current policy involving EPSCoR, as well as budget requests.
Date: September 23, 2010
Creator: Matthews, Christine M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Water Infrastructure Projects Designated in EPA Appropriations: Trends and Policy Implications

Description: This report discusses appropriations for Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) water infrastructure programs, focusing on congressional special project designations in the account that funds these programs. While some Members of Congress, interest groups, and Administration officials are critical of these types of congressional actions, there is little indication that the practice will cease. Information on the programmatic history of EPA involvement in assisting wastewater treatment and drinking water projects also is provided in two appendixes.
Date: October 28, 2010
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

United States Fire Administration: An Overview

Description: The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) - which includes the National Fire Academy (NFA) - is currently an entity within the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The objective of the USFA is to significantly reduce the nation's loss of life from fire, while also achieving a reduction in property loss and non-fatal injury due to fire. In the 111th Congress, debate over the USFA budget focuses on whether the USFA is receiving sufficient funding to accomplish its mission, given that appropriations for USFA have consistently been well below the agency's authorized level. An ongoing issue is the viability and status of the USFA and National Fire Academy within the Department of Homeland Security.
Date: October 8, 2010
Creator: Kruger, Lennard G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: The planned size of the Navy, the rate of Navy ship procurement, and the prospective affordability of the Navy's shipbuilding plans have been matters of concern for the congressional defense committees for the past several years. The issue for Congress that is discussed in this report is how to respond to the Navy's proposed force structure and shipbuilding plans. Decisions that Congress makes on this issue could significantly affect future U.S. military capabilities, Navy funding requirements, and the Navy shipbuilding industrial base.
Date: September 28, 2010
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy CG(X) Cruiser Program: Background for Congress

Description: The Navy's FY2011 budget proposes canceling the CG(X) program as unaffordable and instead building an improved version of the Arleigh Burke (DDG-51) class Aegis destroyer called the Flight III version. This report provides background information on the CG(X) program as it existed prior to its proposed cancellation. For further discussion of the proposal to build Flight III DDG-51s in lieu of CG(X)s, see the CRS report on destroyer procurement.
Date: September 28, 2010
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department