Congressional Research Service Reports - Browse

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Access to Government Information In the United States
The Constitution of the United States makes no specific allowance for any one of the co-equal branches to have access to information held by the others and contains no provision expressly establishing a procedure for, or a right of, public access to government information. Nonetheless, Congress has legislated various public access laws. These include two records access statutes — the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act — and two meetings access statutes — the Federal Advisory Committee Act and the Government in the Sunshine Act. This report provides background on the issue of government transparency and examines relevant litigation.
The Information Quality Act: OMB's Guidance and Initial Implementation
No Description Available.
Access to Government Information In the United States
The Constitution of the United States makes no specific allowance for any one of the co-equal branches to have access to information held by the others and contains no provision expressly establishing a procedure for, or a right of, public access to government information. Nonetheless, Congress has legislated various public access laws. These include two records access statutes — the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act — and two meetings access statutes — the Federal Advisory Committee Act and the Government in the Sunshine Act. This report provides background on the issue of government transparency and examines relevant litigation.
Access to Government Information In the United States
The Constitution of the United States makes no specific allowance for any one of the co-equal branches to have access to information held by the others and contains no provision expressly establishing a procedure for, or a right of, public access to government information. Nonetheless, Congress has legislated various public access laws. These include two records access statutes — the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act — and two meetings access statutes — the Federal Advisory Committee Act and the Government in the Sunshine Act. This report provides background on the issue of government transparency and examines relevant litigation.
Presidential Claims of Executive Privilege: History, Law, Practice and Recent Developments
This report discusses the background of claims of executive privilege, a right to preserve the confidentiality of information and documents in the face of legislative demands, ending with a look into how President George W. Bush has used them.
Lobbyists and Interest Groups: Sources of Information
Lobbyists and interest groups play an active role in the American legislative process. Information on lobbyist registrations and on interest groups in general is available from a variety of online and printed sources, including files available for public inspection. This report is a guide for locating governmental sources that maintain files on lobby groups, their registrations, and finances. Also included in this report are nongovernmental sources that offer background information on the lobbyists and interest groups who focus on legislation in Washington.
Lobbyists and Interest Groups: Sources of Information
Lobbyists and interest groups play an active role in the American legislative process. Information on lobbyist registrations and on interest groups in general is available from a variety of online and printed sources, including files available for public inspection. This report is a guide for locating governmental sources that maintain files on lobby groups, their registrations, and finances. Also included in this report are nongovernmental sources that offer background information on the lobbyists and interest groups who focus on legislation in Washington.
Lobbyists and Interest Groups: Sources of Information
Lobbyists and interest groups play an active role in the American legislative process. Information on lobbyist registrations and on interest groups in general is available from a variety of online and printed sources, including files available for public inspection. This report is a guide for locating governmental sources that maintain files on lobby groups, their registrations, and finances. Also included in this report are nongovernmental sources that offer background information on the lobbyists and interest groups who focus on legislation in Washington.
Lobbyists and Interest Groups: Sources of Information
Lobbyists and interest groups play an active role in the American legislative process. Information on lobbyist registrations and on interest groups in general is available from a variety of online and printed sources, including files available for public inspection. This report is a guide for locating governmental sources that maintain files on lobby groups, their registrations, and finances. Also included in this report are nongovernmental sources that offer background information on the lobbyists and interest groups who focus on legislation in Washington.
Iraq: Map Sources
This report identifies online sources for maps of Iraq, including government, library, and organizational websites. These sources have been selected on the basis of their authoritativeness and the range, quality, and uniqueness of the maps they provide. Some sources provide up-to-the-minute maps; others have been selected for their collection of historical maps. Maps of the Iraq, the Middle East, the state of Al Qaeda in Iraq, and the movement of refugees in Iraq are provided.
Interest Groups and Lobbyists: Sources of Information
Interest groups, including those who actively lobby, continue to play a role in the American legislative process. After years of congressional efforts to improve disclosure of interest groups, the Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA) of 1995 (P.L. 104-65) and the Lobbying Disclosure Technical Amendments Act of 1997 (P.L. 105-166) were signed into law on December 19, 1995, and April 6, 1998, respectively. Both laws seek greater disclosure of interest groups’ activities and more accuracy in reporting their spending. Information on lobbyist registrations and on interest groups in general is available from a variety of online and printed sources, including files available for public inspection. This report provides a list of directories and online services that offer background on the interest groups and lobbyists who focus on legislation in Washington.
Congressional Printing: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview and analysis of issues related to the processing and distribution of congressional information by the Government Printing Office. Subsequent sections address several issues, including funding congressional printing, printing authorizations, current printing practices, and options for Congress. Finally, the report provides congressional printing appropriations, production, and distribution data in a number of tables.
Federal Rulemaking: The Role of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs
This report discusses the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980, which created the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) within the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). This report addresses OIRA's responsibilities, controversies related to OIRA, and possible legislative issues involving OIRA, including increasing or decreasing the office's funding and staffing, and improvements in the transparency of OIRA's review process.
The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (S. 2590): Overview and Comparison with H.R. 5060
In an attempt to expand oversight of federal spending, including earmarks, S. 2590 would provide the public with access to an online database containing information about entities that are awarded federal grants, loans, and contracts. This report summarizes S. 2590, compares it to H.R. 5060, and outlines the arguments in favor of the bill and those critical of it. The final section discusses the implications of using the Federal Assistance Award Data System (FAADS) and the Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS) to populate the bill’s proposed database.
The 2010 Decennial Census: Background and Issues
This report discusses the major innovations that were planned for the 2010 Census, problems encountered in the attempt to automate certain decennial field operations, issues of census accuracy and coverage, and efforts to ensure an equitable count.
Iraq: Map Sources
This report identifies online sources for maps of Iraq, including government, library, and organizational websites.
Director of National Intelligence Statutory Authorities: Status and Proposals
This report discusses the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) position created by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (P.L. 108-458). It includes an overview of the authorities granted to the DNI by legislation in 2004 and later as well as the varying opinions of Congress regarding new DNI authorities, as well as related legislation.
Congressional Record: Its Production, Distribution, and Accessibility
This report briefly discusses how the Congressional Record is created and distributed. The Congressional Record is the most widely recognized published account of the debates and activities in Congress and it often reflects the intent of Congress in enacting legislation.
A User's Guide to the Congressional Record
This report discusses use of the Congressional Record, which is a substantially verbatim account of remarks made during the proceedings of the House and Senate, subject only to technical, grammatical, and typographical corrections. It consists of four main sections: the proceedings of the House and Senate, the Extensions of Remarks, and the Daily Digest.
Iraq: Map Sources
This report identifies selected websites for maps of Iraq, including government, library, and organizational websites. Maps of the Middle East, Iraq, facilities used by U.S. forces in the Gulf, and U.S. government humanitarian assistance and reconstruction activities in Iraq are also provided.
Public Printing Reform: Issues and Actions
No Description Available.
Public Printing Reform: Issues and Actions
No Description Available.
Public Printing Reform: Issues and Actions
No Description Available.
Public Printing Reform: Issues and Actions
No Description Available.
Public Printing Reform: Issues and Actions
No Description Available.
Critical Infrastructure Information Disclosure and Homeland Security
This report discusses the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) that was passed to ensure by statute citizen access to government information. Nine categories of information may be exempted from disclosure. Three of the nine exemptions provide possible protection against the release of critical infrastructure information: exemption 1 (national security information); exemption 3 (information exempted by statute); and exemption 4 (confidential business information). Congress has considered several proposals to exempt critical infrastructure information from the FOIA.
Critical Infrastructure Information Disclosure and Homeland Security
This report discusses the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) that was passed to ensure by statute citizen access to government information. Nine categories of information may be exempted from disclosure. Three of the nine exemptions provide possible protection against the release of critical infrastructure information: exemption 1 (national security information); exemption 3 (information exempted by statute); and exemption 4 (confidential business information). Congress has considered several proposals to exempt critical infrastructure information from the FOIA.
Iraq: Map Sources
This report identifies selected websites for maps of Iraq, including government, library, and organizational websites. Maps of the Middle East, Iraq, facilities used by U.S. forces in the Gulf, and U.S. government humanitarian assistance and reconstruction activities in Iraq are also provided.
Iraq: Map Sources
This report identifies selected Web sites for maps of Iraq. Selected government, library, and organizational Web site addresses are provided. Maps of the Middle East, Iraq, the No-Fly Zone, and Facilities Used by U.S. Forces in the Gulf are also provided.
FY2005 Budget Documents: Internet Access and GPO Availability
Every year the President submits to Congress a series of volumes that provide the text of the President’s proposed budget for the coming fiscal year. Neither the Congressional Research Service (CRS) nor the Library of Congress can provide giveaway copies of these documents. This report provides brief descriptions of these budget volumes and related documents, together with Internet addresses, Government Printing Office (GPO) stock numbers, and prices to obtain these publications. It also tells how to find locations of government depository libraries, which can provide both printed copies for reference use and Internet access to the text.
U.S. Merchandise Trade Data: 1948-2002
No Description Available.
U.S. Merchandise Trade Data: 1948-2002
No Description Available.
U.S. Merchandise Trade Statistics: 1948-2000
No Description Available.
U.S. Merchandise Trade Statistics: 1948-2001
No Description Available.
Iraq: Map Sources
This report identifies selected Web sites for maps of Iraq. Selected government, library, and organizational Web site addresses are provided. Maps of the Middle East, Iraq, the No-Fly Zone, and Facilities Used by U.S. Forces in the Gulf are also provided.
Iraq: Map Sources
This report identifies selected Web sites for maps of Iraq. Selected government, library, and organizational Web site addresses are provided. Maps of the Middle East, Iraq, Facilities Used by U.S. Forces in the Gulf, and USG Humanitarian Assistance and Reconstruction Activities in Iraq are also provided.
Federal Chief Information Officer (CIO): Opportunities and Challenges
No Description Available.
Secrecy Versus Openness: New Proposed Arrangements for Balancing Competing Needs
No Description Available.
Secrecy Versus Openness: New Proposed Arrangements for Balancing Competing Needs
No Description Available.
Sensitive Security Information and Transportation Security: Issues and Congressional Options
No Description Available.
Sensitive Security Information (SSI) and Transportation Security: Background and Controversies
No Description Available.
Electronic Rulemaking in the Federal Government
This report explores the Bush Administration's initiative of implementing electronic rulemaking (e-rulemaking) in the federal government, the questions regarding how this initiative is being funded, its overall structure, its costs and expected financial benefits, the functionality of some of the applications being used, and its effect on public participation in the rulemaking process.
Military Service Records and Unit Histories: A Guide to Locating Sources
This report provides information on locating military unit histories and individual service records of discharged, retired, and deceased military personnel. It includes contact information for military history centers, websites for additional sources of research, and a bibliography of other publications.
Congress as a Consumer of Intelligence Information
This report examines the role of Congress as a consumer of national intelligence and examines several issues that Congress might address in the 111th Congress.
"Gang of Four" Congressional Intelligence Notifications
This report reviews the history of Gang of Four notification process and compares this procedure with that of the "Gang of Eight" notification procedure.
The Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act: Implementation and Proposed Amendments
This report initially discusses the background of the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (FFATA). It then discusses the act's provisions, noting what types of assistance are part of the new website, the primary sources of the data, and deadlines for implementation. The report then identifies and discusses issues that have been raised regarding the act that might affect its implementation. Finally, it examines legislation proposed in the 110th Congress that would significantly expand the information accessible through USAspending.gov.
Terrorism Information Sharing and the Nationwide Suspicious Activity Report Initiative: Background and Issues for Congress
This report describes the Nationwide SAR Initiative (NSI), the rationale for the sharing of terrorism-related Suspicious Activity Reports (SARs), and how the NSI seeks to achieve this objective. It examines the privacy and civil liberties concerns raised by the initiative and identifies other oversight issues for Congress.
"Gang of Four" Congressional Intelligence Notifications
"Gang of Four" intelligence notifications generally are oral briefings of certain particularly sensitive non-covert action intelligence activities, including principally, but not exclusively, intelligence collection programs, that the Intelligence Community typically limits to the chairmen and ranking members of the two congressional intelligence committees, and at times, but not always, to their respective staff directors. This report reviews the history of Gang of Four notification process and compares this procedure with that of the "Gang of Eight" notification procedure.
Sensitive Covert Action Notifications: Oversight Options for Congress
This report describes the statutory provision authorizing Gang of Eight notifications, reviews the legislative history of the provision, and examines the impact of such notifications on congressional oversight.
Sensitive Covert Action Notifications: Oversight Options for Congress
This report describes the statutory provision authorizing Gang of Eight notifications, reviews the legislative history of the provision, and examines the impact of such notifications on congressional oversight.