Congressional Research Service Reports - Browse

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H.R. 3768: the Katrina Emergency Tax Relief Act of 2005
This report compares the provisions in H.R. 3768, the Katrina Emergency Tax Relief Act of 2005, as passed by the House with those in the amended version of the bill that was passed by the Senate.
Issues Raised by Hurricane Katrina: A Focus On Education and Training
This report provides a general overview of the federally funded programs administered by the Department of Education (ED) that can be used to help those affected by this disaster, and the existing statutory and regulatory authorities available to assist individuals who have been affected by a major disaster, where applicable.
Detection of Explosives on Airline Passengers: Recommendation of the 9/11 Commission and Related Issues
This report discusses options for airline passenger explosives trace detection, ongoing federal R&D efforts and pilot equipment deployments, and policy issues related to the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (P.L. 108-458). The legislation directs the Department of Homeland Security to place high priority on developing and deploying equipment for passenger explosives screening; requires TSA to submit a strategic plan for deploying such equipment; and authorizes additional research funding.
An Examination of Federal Disaster Relief Under the Budget Control Act
The first section of this report addresses the pre-BCA (Budget Control Act) funding mechanism for major disaster declarations, including the role of the President's Disaster Relief Fund (DRF). Next, this report provides a basic overview of how that funding mechanism has evolved under the BCA, and how Hurricane Sandy was addressed under that mechanism. Finally, the report explores a number of other issues pertinent to disaster relief funding in the BCA-regulated environment.
Assistance to Firefighters Program: Distribution of Fire Grant Funding
This report discusses the federal funding of firefighters, though most funding for firefighters is provided by state and local governments. During the 1990s, shortfalls in state and local budgets, coupled with increased responsibilities of local fire departments, led many in the fire community to call for additional financial support from the federal government.
The National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP): Issues in Brief
This report discusses the responsibility of four federal agencies for long-term earthquake risk reduction under the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP). Congress has not introduced legislation in the 114th Congress that addresses the NEHRP program directly.
U.S. and International Responses to the Global Spread of Avian Flu: Issues for Congress
This report will provide an account of global H5N1-related human infections and deaths, outline U.S. government and international responses to the global spread of H5N1, discuss situations in various countries affected by H5N1, and present some foreign policy issues for Congress.
Forest Fire/Wildfire Protection
This report provides historical background on wildfires, and describes concerns about the wildland-urban interface and about forest and rangeland health. It discusses fuel management, fire control, and fire effects and also examines federal, state, and landowner roles and responsibilities in protecting lands and resources from wildfires. The report concludes by discussing current issues for federal wildfire management.
Earthquake Risk and U.S. Highway Infrastructure: Frequently Asked Questions
This report addresses a number of frequently asked questions about earthquake risk and highway system components, especially bridges. Earthquakes and related events, such as soil liquefaction, landslides, tsunamis, flooding, and fires, pose risks to highway infrastructure. Concerns about the U.S. highway system's seismic vulnerability stem from interest in protecting public safety, facilitating response and recovery efforts, and minimizing economic loss and social disruption.
Federal Flood Risk Management Standard (FFRMS)
This report briefly discusses the Federal Flood Risk Management Standard (FFRMS), which is the principal mechanism for accomplishing the flood risk management policies established by President Obama in Executive Order (E.O.) 13690. The FFRMS is a flood resilience standard that is required for "federally funded projects."
Federal Evacuation Policy: Issues for Congress
This report discusses federal evacuation policy and analyzes potential lessons learned from the evacuation of individuals from Hurricane Katrina. Several issue areas that might arise concerning potential lawmaking and oversight on evacuation policy are also highlighted. This report will be updated as significant legislative or administrative changes occur.
Hurricane Katrina: Medicaid Issues
This report discusses the following: Medicaid’s rules on eligibility, benefits, and financing in the context of current questions and issues raised by Hurricane Katrina. Recent state actions in response to Medicaid issues raised by the hurricane. Federal Medicaid waiver authority, including information on current activity in this area and the New York Disaster Relief Medicaid waiver granted in response to the September 11 terrorist attacks. Current federal legislation related to Medicaid and Hurricane Katrina relief efforts.
Indian Ocean Earthquake and Tsunami: Food Aid Needs and the U.S. Response
No Description Available.
The Use of Federal Troops for Disaster Assistance: Legal Issues
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The Macroeconomic Effects of Hurricane Katrina
No Description Available.
Federal Disaster and Emergency Assistance for Water Infrastructure Facilities and Supplies
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Auburn Dam on the American River: Fact Sheet
For more than 30 years, Congress has debated constructing a dam on the American River near Auburn, California. The Army Corps of Engineers recently identified three alternatives for flood control, with the Division office's preferred plan calling for construction of a 508-foot-high detention dam. Currently, two bills address the issue: H.R. 3270 supports construction of the dam, while H.R. 2951 opposes construction of any structure on the North Fork of the American River.
Assistance to Firefighters Program
The Assistance to Firefighters Program,1 also known as the FIRE Act grant program, was established by Title XVII of the FY2001 National Defense Authorization Act (P.L. 106-398). Currently administered by the United States Fire Administration (USFA) within the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the program provides federal grants directly to local fire departments to help address a variety of equipment, training, and other firefighter-related needs. The FY2004 proposal would place the fire grant program within the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office for Domestic Preparedness, located within the Border and Transportation Security Directorate. Under this proposal, the Assistance to Firefighters Program would be removed from the USFA, which will remain in the DHS Directorate of Emergency Preparedness and Response.
Emergency Contracting Authorities
Hurricane Katrina has given rise to many emergency contracting situations. This report will attempt to identify and summarize the primary emergency contracting authorities which might be available to facilitate response to these situations. Generally, these authorities may be divided into two categories, general emergency authority, and emergency (or national interest) exceptions to general procurement statutes or regulations.
Farm Disaster Assistance
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Farm Disaster Assistance
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Farm Disaster Assistance
No Description Available.
Emergency Supplemental Appropriations for Hurricane Katrina Relief
This CRS report summarizes federal disaster assistance funding legislation in the 109th Congress and presents some information on federal expenditures and obligations for disaster recovery activities.
Detection of Explosives on Airline Passengers: Recommendation of the 9/11 Commission and Related Issues
The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States, known as the 9/11 Commission, recommended that Congress and the Transportation Security Administration give priority attention to screening airline passengers for explosives. The key issue for Congress is balancing the costs of mandating passenger explosives trace detection against other aviation security needs. Passenger explosives screening technologies have been under development for several years and are now being deployed in selected airports.
Detection of Explosives on Airline Passengers: Recommendation of the 9/11 Commission and Related Issues
The Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (P.L. 108-458) directs the Department of Homeland Security to place high priority on developing and deploying equipment for passenger explosives screening; requires TSA to submit a strategic plan for deploying such equipment; and authorizes additional research funding. It also requires that passengers who are selected for additional screening be screened for explosives, as an interim measure until all passengers can be screened for explosives. Congressional interest in this topic continues in the 109th Congress. This report discusses the current state of passenger explosives trace detection, ongoing federal R&D efforts and pilot equipment deployments, and related policy issues.
Emergency Supplemental Appropriations for Hurricane Katrina Relief
This CRS report summarizes federal disaster assistance funding legislation in the 109th Congress and presents some information on federal expenditures and obligations for disaster recovery activities.
U.S. Agriculture After Hurricane Katrina: Status and Issues
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U.S. Agriculture After Hurricanes Katrina and Rita: Status and Issues
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Emergency Waiver of EPA Regulations: Authorities and Legislative Proposals in the Aftermath of Hurricane Katrina
This report reviews some of the environmental laws that could affect response and recovery actions, discusses existing waiver authority, and identifies issues raised by proposals to grant new waiver authority. The focus of the report is on regulatory programs administered by EPA, including the Clean Water Act, Superfund, and the Clean Air Act. In the short term, in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, environmental regulations do not appear to have posed an obstacle to local, state, federal, or private response efforts, in part because existing waiver or flexibility provisions were used in certain cases.
Federal Disaster Recovery Programs: Brief Summaries
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Farm Disaster Assistance: USDA Programs and Recent Legislative Action
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FEMA Reorganization Legislation in the 109th Congress
In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Members of Congress and others raised questions about the scope and reach of federal emergency management policies, the procedures used to administer federal statutory authorities, the qualifications of personnel, and other issues. Most of the questions focused on the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the agency primarily responsible for coordinating federal and non-federal disaster response activities. This report provides information on provisions of the Senate-approved amendment (S.Amdt. 4560) to the FY2007 appropriations bill, H.R. 5316, and H.R. 5351 that address concerns identified after Hurricane Katrina. To provide a context for information on the legislation, this report first summarizes findings and recommendations of the congressional and White House studies pertinent to the pending legislation reported from the House committees.
Oil and Gas Disruption from Hurricanes Katrina and Rita
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2005 Gulf Coast Hurricanes: The Public Health and Medical Response
In response to a series of disasters (namely, the 2005 Hurricanes Katrina and Rita) and terrorist attacks (namely, the 2001 terror attacks) over the past decade, Congress, the Administration, state and local governments, and the private sector have made investments to improve disaster preparedness and response. New federal authorities and programs to strengthen the nation's public health system were introduced in comprehensive legislation in 2002. Congress also created the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in 2002, and a new National Response Plan (NRP) was launched by DHS in December 2004. This report discusses the NRP and its components for public health and medical response, provides information on key response activities carried out by agencies in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and DHS, and discusses certain issues in public health and medical preparedness that have been raised by the response to the 2005 Gulf Coast hurricanes.
2005 Gulf Coast Hurricanes: The Public Health and Medical Response
This report discusses the National Response Plan (NRP) and its components for public health and medical response, provides information on key response activities carried out by agencies in the Department of Health and Human Serivces (HHS) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and discusses certain issues in public health and medical preparedness that have been raised by the response to the 2005 Gulf Coast hurricanes.
Hurricane Katrina-Related Immigration Issues and Legislation
This report focuses on four immigration policy implications of Hurricane Katrina
The Americans with Disabilities Act and Emergency Preparedness and Response
This report briefly discusses the nondiscrimination provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), which are applicable to emergency preparedness and responses to disasters. The ADA does not include provisions specifically for disasters, such as Hurricane Katrina, for example.
Survey of the Fifty States and the District of Columbia Statutes Generally Concerning the Quarantine and Isolation of Persons Having A Contagious or Infectious Disease
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Electronic Congress: Proposals and Issues
The events of September 11, 2001, and the subsequent anthrax incidents have prompted some observers to suggest creating a capability for a virtual or electronic Congress (e-Congress) that could function in the event of an emergency. Currently, it is unclear exactly how an e-Congress would be constituted and operated; however, a proposal (H.R. 3481) has been introduced to require the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to investigate the feasibility and costs of implementing a computer system for remote voting and communication for Congress to ensure business continuity for congressional operations.
Assistance After Hurricanes and Other Disasters: FY2004 and FY2005 Supplemental Appropriations
After a series of devastating hurricanes struck Florida and other states in the summer of 2004, the 108th Congress passed two emergency supplemental appropriations statutes that provide a total of $16.475 billion to areas stricken by the hurricanes and other natural disasters. The House and Senate quickly approved legislation (H.R. 5005) the day after President Bush submitted a request on September 6 for $2 billion in FY2004 funding, largely in response to the devastation caused by Hurricanes Charley and Frances in Florida. The other issue that was a matter of public debate focused on a proposed amendment in the House to fully offset the cost of the FY2005 supplemental through a proportional reduction in discretionary funds; the House rejected the amendment.
Supplemental Appropriations for the 2004 Hurricanes and Other Disasters
No Description Available.
Bioterrorism: Summary of a CRS/National Health Policy Forum Seminar on Federal, State, and Local Public Health Preparedness
The September 11th attack and subsequent intentional release of anthrax spores via the U.S. postal system have focused policymakers’ attention on the preparedness and response capability of the nation’s public health system. The anthrax attacks put a tremendous strain on the U. S. public health infrastructure, an infrastructure that many experts argue has been weakened by years of neglect and under-funding. To better understand the preparedness gaps that exist, as well as the disparate functions and agencies that define public health in this country, the Congressional Research Service (CRS), in conjunction with George Washington University’s National Health Policy Forum (NHPF), convened a seminar on October 26, 2001, entitled, The U.S. Health Care System: Are State and Local Officials Prepared for Bioterrorism? How Should the Federal Government Assist?
Bioterrorism: Summary of a CRS/National Health Policy Forum Seminar on Federal, State, and Local Public Health Preparedness
The September 11th attack and subsequent intentional release of anthrax spores via the U.S. postal system have focused policymakers’ attention on the preparedness and response capability of the nation’s public health system. The anthrax attacks put a tremendous strain on the U. S. public health infrastructure, an infrastructure that many experts argue has been weakened by years of neglect and under-funding. To better understand the preparedness gaps that exist, as well as the disparate functions and agencies that define public health in this country, the Congressional Research Service (CRS), in conjunction with George Washington University’s National Health Policy Forum (NHPF), convened a seminar on October 26, 2001, entitled, The U.S. Health Care System: Are State and Local Officials Prepared for Bioterrorism? How Should the Federal Government Assist?
Older Americans Act: Disaster Assistance for Older Persons After Hurricane Katrina
No Description Available.
Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA)
Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) provides assistance to previously employed or self- employed individuals rendered unemployed as a direct result of a major disaster and who are not eligible for regular federal/state unemployment insurance (UI). DUA is federally funded through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), but is administered by the state UI agencies.
Hurricane Katrina-Related Immigration Issues and Legislation
No Description Available.
AIDS in Africa
No Description Available.
United States Fire Administration: An Overview
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. This report describes and analyzes the Administration's FY2009 budget proposal, as well as related information and legislation.
United States Fire Administration: An Overview
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. This report describes and analyzes the Administration's FY2009 budget proposal, as well as related information and legislation.
Reallocation of Hurricanes Katrina Emergency Appropriations: Defense and Other Issues
No Description Available.