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The U.N. Law of the Sea Convention and the United States: Developments Since October 2003

Description: On October 31, 2007, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted to recommend Senate advice and consent to U.S. adherence to the 1982 U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea and the 1994 Agreement Relating to Implementation of Part XI of that Convention. This followed the statement by President Bush on May 15, 2007, urging “the Senate to act favorably on U.S. accession” to the Convention. CRS Issue Brief IB95010, The Law of the Sea Convention and U.S. Policy, serves as a basic CRS source for discussion of issues related to the United States and the Convention and Agreement, whereas this report focuses on events and issues that emerged since October 2003. It summarizes the committee’s proposed resolution of advice and consent in 2004 and presents some of the issues raised in support of and in opposition to U.S. adherence.
Date: October 31, 2007
Creator: Browne, Marjorie Ann
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Endangered Species Act and "Sound Science"

Description: This report provides a context for evaluating legislative proposals through examples of how science has been used in selected cases, a discussion of the nature and role of science in general, and its role in the Endangered Species Act (ESA) process in particular, together with general and agency information quality requirements and policies, and a review of how the courts have viewed agency use of science.
Date: September 27, 2007
Creator: Buck, Eugene H.; Corn, M. L.; Baldwin, Pamela & Alexander, Kristina
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Congress’s Contempt Power: A Sketch

Description: This report outlines the source of the contempt power, reviews major developments in the case law, and analyzes the procedures associated with each of the three different types of contempt proceedings.
Date: August 1, 2007
Creator: Rosenberg, Morton & Tatelman, Todd B.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The “Farm Bill” in Brief

Description: This report briefly discusses federal farm support, food assistance, agricultural trade, marketing, and rural development policies are governed by a variety of separate laws. Many of these laws periodically have been evaluated, revised, and renewed through an omnibus, multi-year farm bill. These policies can be and sometimes are modified through free-standing authorizing legislation, or as part of other laws.
Date: February 2, 2007
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The “Farm Bill” in Brief

Description: This report discusses the farm bill, which renewed about every five years, governs federal farm and food policy. The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (P.L. 107-171) is the most recent omnibus farm bill, covering a wide range of programs including commodity price and income support, farm credit, agricultural conservation, research, rural development, and foreign and domestic food programs, among others.
Date: May 29, 2007
Creator: Johnson, Renée
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The “Farm Bill” in Brief

Description: Federal farm support, food assistance, agricultural trade, marketing, and rural development policies are governed by a variety of separate laws. Although many of these policies can be and sometimes are modified through freestanding authorizing legislation, or as part of other laws, the omnibus, multi-year farm bill provides an opportunity for policymakers to address agricultural and food issues more comprehensively.
Date: January 3, 2007
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Federal Communications Commission: Current Structure and its Role in the Changing Telecommunications Landscape

Description: The report discusses the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)-Related Congressional Actions in the 112th Congress. The policymakers, including some in Congress, have long called for varying degrees and types of reform to the FCC. Most proposals fall into two categories: (1) procedural changes made within the FCC or through congressional action that would affect the agency's operations or (2) substantive policy changes requiring congressional action that would affect how the agency regulates different services and industry sectors.
Date: March 15, 2007
Creator: Moloney Figliola, Patricia
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Forestry in the 2007 Farm Bill

Description: This report briefly describes the Agriculture Committees' jurisdiction over forestry, with examples of legislation addressed by the committees. It discusses forestry issues likely to be debated in the upcoming farm bill and presents information on the forestry provisions in the Administration's proposal for the 2007 farm bill, followed by the forestry provisions in the Farm, Nutrition, and Bioenergy Act of 2007 (H.R. 2419).
Date: August 20, 2007
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Arsenic in Drinking Water: Regulatory Developments and Issues

Description: This report discusses the 1996 Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments. These amendments directed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to update the standard for arsenic in drinking water.
Date: January 17, 2007
Creator: Tiemann, Mary
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Exemptions from Environmental Law for the Department of Defense: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: Over time, Congress has included exemptions in several environmental statutes to ensure that requirements of those statutes would not restrict military training needs to the extent that national security would be compromised. This report discusses these exemptions and congressional disagreement over the need for broader exemptions in the absence of data on the overall impact of environmental requirements on training and readiness.
Date: January 3, 2007
Creator: Bearden, David M.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Burma: Economic Sanctions

Description: This report provides background information on existing economic sanctions against Burma and possible options to expand sanctions.
Date: December 14, 2007
Creator: Niksch, Larry A. & Weiss, Martin A.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Nonimmigrant Overstays: Brief Synthesis of the Issue

Description: This report discusses a fundamental problem of immigration control in which foreign nationals enter legally on a temporary basis and continue to stay after their visas expire.
Date: January 24, 2007
Creator: Wasem, Ruth Ellen
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Wildfire Funding

Description: This report briefly describes the three categories of federal programs for wildfire protection. One is to protect the federal lands managed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service (FS), and by the U.S. Department of the Interior, whose wildfire programs are coordinated by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). A second category assists state and local governments and communities in protecting nonfederal lands; these programs are used to reduce wildland fuels, to otherwise prepare for fire control, to contain and control wildfires, and to respond after severe wildfires have burned. A third category of federal programs supports fire research, fire facilities, and improvements in forest health. The last section of this report discusses the impact of high and rising wildfire costs.
Date: May 7, 2007
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Country-of-Origin Labeling for Foods

Description: This report briefly discusses the USDA's FY2006 appropriation, which postpones rules requiring many retailers to provide country-of-origin labeling (COOL) for fresh produce, red meats, and peanuts until September 30, 2008. The report also discusses related legislation.
Date: January 31, 2007
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act

Description: President George W. Bush signed the Postal Enhancement and Accountability Act (P.L. 109-435) on December 20, 2006. This report briefly describes Congress’s pursuit of postal reform, summarizes the major provisions of the new postal reform law, and identifies possible P.L. 109-435 oversight issues for Congress.
Date: January 22, 2007
Creator: Kosar, Kevin R.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal and State Quarantine and Isolation Authority

Description: This report provides an overview of federal and state public health laws as they relate to the quarantine and isolation of individuals, a discussion of constitutional issues that may be raised should individual liberties be restricted in a quarantine situation, and federalism questions that may arise where federal and state authorities overlap. In addition, the possible role of the armed forces in enforcing public health measures is discussed, specifically whether the Posse Comitatus Act would constrain any military role, and other statutory authorities that may be used for the military enforcement of health measures.
Date: January 23, 2007
Creator: Swendiman, Kathleen S. & Elsea, Jennifer K.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Telecommunications Act: Competition, Innovation, and Reform

Description: In 1996, Congress enacted comprehensive reform of the nation’s statutory and regulatory framework for telecommunications by passing the Telecommunications Act, which substantially amended the 1934 Communications Act. The general objective of the 1996 Act was to open up markets to competition by removing unnecessary regulatory barriers to entry. This report discusses the history of the law and examines current issues.
Date: June 7, 2007
Creator: Goldfarb, Charles B.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Transportation Security: Issues for the 110th Congress

Description: The focus of this report is how best to construct and finance a system of deterrence, protection, and response that effectively reduces the possibility and consequences of another terrorist attack without unduly interfering with travel, commerce, and civil liberties.
Date: August 3, 2007
Creator: Peterman, David R.; Elias, Bart & Frittelli, John
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Extraterritorial Application of American Criminal Law

Description: Crime is ordinarily proscribed, tried and punished according to the laws on the place where it occurs. American criminal law applies beyond the geographical confines of the United States, however, under some limited circumstances. The federal exceptions to the general rule usually involve crimes like drug trafficking, terrorism, or crimes committed aboard a ship or airplane. State prosecution for overseas misconduct is limited almost exclusively to multijurisdictional crimes, i.e., crimes where some elements of the offense are committed within the state and others are committed abroad. The Constitution, Congress, and state law define the circumstances under which American criminal law may be used against crimes occurring, in whole or in part, outside the United States
Date: September 10, 2007
Creator: Doyle, Charles
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act: An Overview of the Statutory Framework and U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court and U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court of Review Decisions

Description: This report discusses the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA), the USA PATRIOT Act of 2001, and other related amendments that were included in the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2002.
Date: February 15, 2007
Creator: Bazan, Elizabeth B.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) Status for Russia and U.S.-Russian Economic Ties

Description: This report discusses the issues surrounding whether or not the U.S. should grant Russia permanent normal trade relations (PNTR) following its accession into the World Trade Organization (WTO). The change in Russia's trade status will require legislation to lift the restrictions of Title IV of the Trade Act of 1974 as they apply to Russia, which includes the "freedom-of-emigration" requirements of the Jackson-Vanik amendment.
Date: July 10, 2007
Creator: Cooper, William H.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Ocean Dumping Act: A Summary of the Law

Description: The Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act of 1972 (MPRSA, P.L. 92-532) has two basic aims: to regulate intentional ocean disposal of materials, and to authorize related research. This report presents a summary of the law, describing the essence of the statute.
Date: August 30, 2007
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Ocean Dumping Act: A Summary of the Law

Description: The Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act has two basic aims: to regulate intentional ocean disposal of materials, and to authorize related research. Permit and enforcement provisions of the law are often referred to as the Ocean Dumping Act. The basic provisions of the act have remained virtually unchanged since 1972, when it was enacted to establish a comprehensive waste management system to regulate disposal or dumping of all materials into marine waters that are within U.S. jurisdiction, although a number of new authorities have been added. This report presents a summary of the law.
Date: April 10, 2007
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Water Quality Issues in the 110th Congress: Oversight and Implementation

Description: This report discusses issues surrounding the Clean Water Act (CWA) of 1972 and programs set up to meet the water quality standards that it outlined. The report focuses specifically on the legislative issues for the 110th Congress in relation to the CWA. It also includes a brief comparison of the expected appropriations for FY2007 and FY2008.
Date: March 15, 2007
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department