Congressional Research Service Reports - 84 Matching Results

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FBI Director: Appointment and Tenure
This report reviews the legislative history surrounding the enactment of the 1968 and 1976 amendments to the appointment of the FBI Director, as well as information on the nominees to the FBI Directorship since 1972. It also provides a legal overview of the extension of a Director's tenure.
Asset Forfeiture: Selected Legal Issues and Reforms
This report discusses the asset forfeiture, which refers (in this report) to the process of confiscating either property or money from a person because it is illegal to possess (contraband), constitutes the proceeds of a crime, or was used to facilitate a crime. The report provides an overview of both types -- civil asset forfeiture and criminal forfeitures -- as well as select legal issues and structural reforms.
Missing Adults: Background, Federal Programs, and Issues for Congress
The first section of this report discusses demographics and record keeping of missing adults and unidentified remains, as well as some of the factors that may contribute to the disappearance of adults. This section also discusses federally-funded databases that are used to track data on missing adults and unidentified individuals. The second section of the report describes the federal programs and initiatives to assist in locating missing adults, including funding data where applicable. Finally, the third section discusses issues about the federal role in missing adult cases.
The Federal Grand Jury
This report is a brief general description of the federal grand jury, with particular emphasis on its more controversial aspects—relationship of the prosecutor and the grand jury, the rights of grand jury witnesses, grand jury secrecy, and rights of targets of a grand jury investigation.
Overview of FY2016 Appropriations for Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS)
This report tracks and describes actions taken by the Administration and Congress to provide FY2016 appropriations for the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) accounts. It also provides an overview of FY2015 appropriations for agencies and bureaus funded as part of the annual appropriation for CJS.
Identity Theft: Trends and Issues
In 2010, about 8.1 million Americans were reportedly victims of identity fraud, and the average identity fraud victim incurred a mean of $631 in costs as a result of the fraud—the highest level since 2007. Identity theft is often committed to facilitate other crimes such as credit card fraud, document fraud, or employment fraud, which in turn can affect not only the nation's economy but its security. Consequently, in securing the nation and its economic health, policy makers are also tasked with reducing identity theft and its impact.
Terrorist Watch List Screening and Brady Background Checks for Firearms
The November 2009 shooting at Fort Hood, TX, renewed interest in terrorist watchlist screening and Brady background checks for firearms through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). In the 110th Congress, Senator Frank Lautenberg and Representative Peter King introduced a bill based on a legislative proposal developed by DOJ that would have authorized the Attorney General to deny the transfer of firearms or the issuance of firearms (and explosives) licenses/permits to "dangerous terrorists." They reintroduced this proposal in the 111th Congress and supporters dubbed it the "Terror Gap" proposal. It was reintroduced once again in the 112th Congress. The Terror Gap proposal raises several potential issues for Congress, which are discussed in this report.
North Korea: Terrorism List Removal?
This report discusses the issue of North Korea's inclusion on the U.S. list of terrorism-supporting countries, which has been a major issue in U.S.-North Korean diplomacy since 2000, particularly in connection with negotiations over North Korea's nuclear program.
Al Qaeda and Affiliates: Historical Perspective, Global Presence, and Implications for U.S. Policy
The focus of this report is on the history of Al Qaeda, known (or attributed) actions, suspected capabilities of the organization and non-aligned entities, and an analysis of select regional Al Qaeda affiliates.
Domestic Human Trafficking Legislation in the 114th Congress
This report discusses domestic human trafficking-related issues that have received legislative action or are of significant interest in the 114th Congress.
Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
No Description Available.
Remedies Available to Victims of Identity Theft
No Description Available.
Gun Control, Mental Incompetency, and Social Security Administration Final Rule
This report discusses the Congressional Review Act disapproval resolution (H.J.Res. 40) passed by the House of Representative to overturn a final rule promulgated by the Social Security Administration (SSA) regarding implementation of firearms restrictions for certain persons.
Obscenity, Child Pornography, and Indecency: Recent Developments and Pending Issues
No Description Available.
Gun Control, Mental Incompetency, and Social Security Administration Final Rule
This report discusses the Congressional Review Act disapproval resolution (H.J.Res. 40) passed by the House of Representative to overturn a final rule promulgated by the Social Security Administration (SSA) regarding implementation of firearms restrictions for certain persons.
Gun Control: FY2017 Appropriations for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and Other Initiatives
This report provides coverage of congressional action on President Barack Obama's FY2017 budget request for his gun safety initiative. This coverage includes analysis of the ATF Congressional Budget Submission, including discussion of selected data trends that could affect ATF workloads during FY2017.
Gun Control, Mental Incompetency, and Social Security Administration Final Rule
This report discusses the Congressional Review Act disapproval resolution (H.J.Res. 40) intended to overturn a final rule promulgated by the Social Security Administration (SSA) regarding implementation of firearms restrictions for certain persons.
Closing the Guantanamo Detention Center: Legal Issues
This report provides an overview of major legal issues likely to arise as a result of executive and legislative action to close the Guantanamo detention facility. It discusses legal issues related to the transfer of Guantanamo detainees, the continued detention of such persons in the United States, and the possible removal of persons brought into the country. It also discusses selected constitutional issues that may arise in the criminal prosecution of detainees, emphasizing the procedural and substantive protections that are utilized in different adjudicatory forums.
Federal Efforts to Address the Threat of Bioterrorism: Selected Issues and Options for Congress
This report focuses on four areas under congressional consideration deemed critical to the success of the biodefense enterprise: strategic planning; risk assessment; surveillance; and the development, procurement, and distribution of medical countermeasures. This report also discusses the effectiveness and sufficiency of programs implementing these aspects of the federal biodefense efforts, outside analysts' suggestions for improving the government's efforts, and current issues under congressional consideration.
Money Laundering: An Abridged Overview of 18 U.S.C. 1956 and Related Federal Criminal Law
This is an overview of the elements of federal criminal money laundering statutes and the sanctions imposed for their violation.
Smart Meter Data: Privacy and Cybersecurity
Fueled by stimulus funding in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), electric utilities have accelerated their deployment of smart meters to millions of homes across the United States with help from the Department of Energy's Smart Grid Investment Grant program. As the meters multiply, so do issues concerning the privacy and security of the data collected by the new technology. Smart meters must record near-real time data on consumer electricity usage and transmit the data to utilities over great distances via communications networks that serve the smart grid. Detailed electricity usage data offers a window into the lives of people inside of a home by revealing what individual appliances they are using, and the transmission of the data potentially subjects this information to interception or theft by unauthorized third parties or hackers. Unforeseen consequences under federal law may result from the installation of smart meters and the communications technologies that accompany them. This report examines federal privacy and cybersecurity laws that may apply to consumer data collected by residential smart meters.
Federal Habeas Corpus Relief: Background, Legislation, and Issues
This report examines the issues surrounding the debate on whether to further restrict state prisoners’ access to federal habeas corpus filings. This report does not discuss issues related to federalism and the proper role of the federal court system in overseeing the actions of state courts pertaining to prisoners’ constitutional rights. The report opens with a discussion of a commission that was established in 1988 to study and make recommendations of the then-current federal habeas corpus system and the 1996 law that restricted prisoners’ access to federal habeas corpus relief. It then provides an analysis of federal habeas corpus petition data since 1990. The report examines whether the number of federal habeas corpus petitions and the time it takes for the federal court system to process these claims have increased since the enactment of the the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA). It then discusses legislation introduced in the 109th Congress that would further restrict state prisoners’ access to federal habeas corpus relief. The report concludes with an analysis of two dominant issues that are at the center of this debate: delays caused by habeas corpus petitions and post-conviction representation.
Polygraph Use by the Department of Energy: Issues for Congress
No Description Available.
Cybersecurity: Authoritative Reports and Resources, by Topic
This report provides references to analytical reports on cybersecurity from CRS, other government agencies, trade associations, and interest groups. The reports and related websites are grouped under a variety of cybersecurity topics.
Legislation to Facilitate Cybersecurity Information Sharing: Economic Analysis
This report analyzes the sharing of cyberattack information by government with private companies, by private companies with the government, and among private companies. Sharing information with consumers is mentioned but is not the central focus of this report.
Trafficking in Persons in Latin America and the Caribbean
This report describes the nature and scope of the problem of human trafficking in Latin America and the Caribbean, including U.S. efforts to deal with trafficking in persons in the region, as well as the successes and failures of some recent country and regional antitrafficking efforts. The report concludes by raising issues that may be helpful for the 113th Congress to consider as it continues to address human trafficking as part of its authorization, appropriations, and oversight activities.
Cybersecurity: Authoritative Reports and Resources, by Topic
This report provides references to analytical reports on cybersecurity from CRS, other government agencies, trade associations, and interest groups. The reports and related websites are grouped under the following cybersecurity topics: policy overview; National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace (NSTIC); cloud computing and FedRAMP; critical infrastructure; cybercrime, data breaches and data security; national security, cyber espionage, and cyberwar (including Stuxnet); international efforts; education/training/workforce; and research and development (R&D).
Enemy Combatant Detainees: Habeas Corpus Challenges in Federal Court
This report provides an overview of the early judicial developments and the establishment of Combatant Status Review Tribunals (CSRTs) procedures; summarizes selected court cases related to the detentions and the use of military commissions; and discusses the Detainee Treatment Act, as amended by the Military Commissions Act of 2006 and the Military Commissions Act of 2009, analyzing its effects on detainee-related litigation in federal court. The report summarizes the Supreme Court's decision in Boumediene invalidating Congress's efforts to revoke the courts' habeas jurisdiction, and discusses some remaining issues and subsequent developments.
Compulsory DNA Collection: A Fourth Amendment Analysis
This report examines statutory authorities, constitutional principles, and case law related to compulsory DNA extraction and analyzes potential impacts of recent developments for Fourth Amendment cases.
Extraterritorial Application of American Criminal Law: An Abbreviated Sketch
This report discusses the application of American criminal law outside the United States.
Homeland Security: Protecting Airliners from Terrorist Missiles
Recent events have focused attention on the threat that terrorists with shoulder fired surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), referred to as Man-Portable Air Defense Systems (MANPADS), pose to commercial airliners. This report discusses SAMs and examines options for mitigating missile threats.
Homeland Security: Protecting Airliners from Terrorist Missiles
Recent events have focused attention on the threat that terrorists with shoulder fired surface-to-air missiles (SAMs), referred to as Man-Portable Air Defense Systems (MANPADS), pose to commercial airliners. This report discusses SAMs and examines options for mitigating missile threats.
Ricin: Technical Background and Potential Role in Terrorism
No Description Available.
Environmental Streamlining Provisions in the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century: Status of Implementation
This report describes the environmental documents required for highway projects, discusses the average amount of time to complete this documentation, summarizes the environmental streamlining provisions under TEA-21, and examines administrative and legislative actions taken to implement these requirements.
Federal Gun Control Laws: The Second Amendment and Other Constitutional Issues
This report examines the historical, legal, and constitutional arguments for and against an individual right to bear firearms under the Second Amendment of the Constitution. Those who favor federal gun control laws tend to assert that the Second Amendment has been correctly interpreted by the courts to confer only a collective right, which may be exercised through state militias. Those who oppose gun control laws tend to assert that the Second Amendment should be interpreted to grant an individual right to bear arms for lawful purposes, subject to appropriately minimal restrictions.
Drug Control: International Policy and Approaches
Over the past decade, worldwide production of illicit drugs has risen dramatically: opium and marijuana production has roughly doubled and coca production tripled. Street prices of cocaine and heroin have fallen significantly in the past 20 years, reflecting increased availability. Despite apparent national political resolve to deal with the drug problem, inherent contradictions regularly appear between U.S. anti-drug policy and other national policy goals and concerns. The mix of competing domestic and international pressures and priorities has produced an ongoing series of disputes within and between the legislative and executive branches concerning U.S. international drug policy. One contentious issue has been the Congressionally-mandated certification process, an instrument designed to induce specified drug-exporting countries to prioritize or pay more attention to the fight against narcotics businesses.
Terrorism and National Security: Issues and Trends
No Description Available.
Terrorism and National Security: Issues and Trends
No Description Available.
Terrorism and National Security: Issues and Trends
No Description Available.
NASA's Space Shuttle
No Description Available.
NASA's Space Shuttle
No Description Available.
NASA's Space Shuttle
No Description Available.
War on Drugs: Legislation in the 108th Congress and Related Developments
No Description Available.
Terrorism: Some Legal Restrictions on Military Assistance to Domestic Authorities Following a Terrorist Attack
No Description Available.
Terrorism, the Future, and U.S. Foreign Policy
No Description Available.
Homeland Security: Protecting Airliners from Terrorist Missiles
No Description Available.
EPA's Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Program: Highlights of Proposed Changes and Impacts on Agriculture
In August 1999 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed regulations to clarify and strengthen the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) program under section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act. Section 303(d) requires states to identify surface waters for which wastewater discharge limits are not stringent enough to achieve water quality standards and to allocate further required pollutant reductions among sources in order to attain those standards. This report discusses the major changes in EPA's proposals, compared with existing regulatory program requirements, and potential impacts on agriculture and forestry sources, which have been controversial.
Critical Infrastructure: Control Systems and the Terrorist Threat
This report addresses the cyber-vulnerability of critical infrastructure industries which regularly use industrial control systems. Industrial control systems may be vulnerable to infiltration by different routes, including wireless transmission, direct access to control system computers, exploitation of dial-up modems used for maintenance, or through the Internet. This report will specifically discuss the potential for access to industrial control systems through the Internet.
Recovery from Terrorist Attacks: A Catalog of Selected Federal Assistance Programs
No Description Available.
The Domestic Terrorist Threat: Background and Issues for Congress
This report focuses on how domestic terrorism is conceptualized by the federal government and issues involved in assessing this threat's significance.