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Satellite Television License of the Copyright Act (17 U.S.C. Section 119) and the 1997 Rate Adjustment

Description: This report summarizes the basic features of the television satellite compulsory license of the Copyright Act (17 U.S.C. 119), including the rate adjustment procedures; reviews the October 1997 rate adjustment setting the current 27-cent per signal per month per subscriber rate; and summarizes recent legislative proposals to stay further implementation of the 1997 rate adjustment, or to revise the section 119 license.
Date: September 28, 1998
Creator: Schrader, Dorothy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Immigration Fundamentals

Description: This report describes the fundamentals of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), which was enacted in 1952 and significantly amended since, most recently by the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996.
Date: July 2, 1998
Creator: Vialet, Joyce
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Campaign Financing

Description: Concerns over financing federal elections have become a seemingly perennial aspect of our political system. This report discusses the debate regarding campaign finance regulation.
Date: October 16, 1998
Creator: Cantor, Joseph E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The International Criminal Court Treaty: Description, Policy Issues, and Congressional Concerns

Description: This report discusses the events leading to the creation of a permanent international criminal tribunal and U.S. perspectives on the Court including: problematic provisions in the ICC Treaty, congressional considerations, and potential implications for U.S. foreign policy.
Date: January 6, 1999
Creator: Grigorian, Ellen
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Air Quality and Transportation Enhancement Provisions in the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991

Description: This report describes how the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Program (CMAQ) and enhancement programs function, examines the policy issues surrounding them, and summarizes relevant provisions in major legislation to reauthorize ISTEA in the 105th Congress.
Date: June 10, 1998
Creator: Bearden, David M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Patent Reform: Overview and Comparison of S. 507 and H.R. 400

Description: H.R. 400 and S. 507 are similar but different omnibus patent reform proposals. Both bills generally transform the Patent and Trademark Office into a government corporation; require publication of patent applications 18 months after filing, subject to certain exceptions that differ in these bills; and extend the patent term for certain delays in patent issuance. S. 507 also contains provisions on patent reexamination reform. This report summarizes and compares the bills and reviews arguments for and against the proposals.
Date: April 16, 1998
Creator: Dorothy Schrader
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

IRS Reform: Innocent Spouse Rule

Description: Married couples filing joint tax returns are liable individually and as a couple for all taxes due on the return with a limited exemption for innocent spouses. This report discusses joint and several liability, which has been the subject of much criticism and calls for reform or elimination.
Date: July 2, 1998
Creator: Ripy, Thomas B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Statutory Modifications of the Application of NEPA

Description: From time to time, Congress has considered the operation of the National Environmental Policy Act. While Congress has amended the statute itself only twice since its enactment, Congress has often enacted provisions that modify the application of the Act or specify the extent of the documents that need be prepared in particular instances or contexts. This report collects and lists examples of such provisions.
Date: May 1, 1998
Creator: Baldwin, Pamela
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Economic Sanctions to Achieve U.S. Foreign Policy Goals: Discussion and Guide to Current Law

Description: This report provides background on foreign policy sanctions and the events that might necessitate their use, criteria to consider when determining if sanctions are appropriate, approaches that might be effective, and aspects of the use of sanctions that are sometimes overlooked or not considered fully. The report also provides an uncomplicated map of where sanctions policies and options currently may be found in U.S. law.
Date: June 5, 1998
Creator: Rennack, Dianne E. & Shuey, Robert D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Brady Handgun Control Act: Constitutional Issues

Description: The Brady Handgun Control Act established a five-day waiting period for handgun purchases, during which local law enforcement can make reasonable efforts to conduct background checks in available records and block and sales to convicted felons and other disqualified persons. This report reviews the background of federal gun control legislation, analyzes the conflict in the courts over the constitutionality under the Tenth Amendment of the duties placed on local law enforcement, and considers the implications of the decisions for Brady Act enforcement.
Date: October 25, 1995
Creator: Schrader, Dorothy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cooperative Research and Development Agreements

Description: A Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) is a mechanism established by P.L. 99-602, the Federal Technology Transfer Act, to allow the transfer of technology, knowledge, and expertise from government laboratories to the private sector for further development and commercialization. The government provides support in the way of overhead for research and development performed in the federal laboratory and is prohibited from providing funding directly to the partner in the collaborative effort. Currently, more than 5,000 CRADAs have been signed. As the 105th Congress determines its approach to science and technology policies, the role of CRADAs continues to be debated within the context of federal support for R&D
Date: November 17, 1998
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Gun Control Laws: The Second Amendment and Other Constitutional Issues

Description: 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.
Date: February 1, 1995
Creator: Schrader, Dorothy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Market-Based Environmental Management: Issues in Implementation

Description: Increasingly, efforts to protect integral features of the natural environment that are essential to human well being face a double challenge. First, the magnitude of some conventional and emerging threats to environmental quality is growing, despite solid progress in controlling some causes. This is particularly the concern on a global scale in terms of atmospheric changes and loss of biological diversity. Second, easily-implemented uniform control methods using feasible technologies or other direct regulatory approaches are already in place for many pollution and resource management problems in the United States. Additional progress with so-called command and control policies can be expensive and disruptive, and thus counter productive to overall economic well being. This type of dilemma is common where environmental deterioration results from diffuse and complex causes inherent in technically-advanced high-consumption industrial societies such as the U.S. Solutions to these types of environmental problems are complicated by the diffuse benefits which obscures the net gains of additional controls that have concentrated and highly visible costs. Given this double bind, many policy analysts and academics have for years advocated more cost-effective and flexible approaches relying on market forces to further some environmental management objectives. Although market-based theory and practical environmental policy are still far apart, the incremental approach to environmental policymaking since the late seventies has resulted in some market-type innovations within traditional regulatory frameworks at all levels of government. The most prominent examples are the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) air emissions trading program and the recently enacted sulfur dioxide allowance trading program under the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments.
Date: March 7, 1994
Creator: Moore, John L.; Blodgett, John E.; Copeland, Claudia; Gushee, David E.; Mayer, Susan L.; McCarthy, James E. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Fish and Wildlife Service: Compensation to Local Governments

Description: The Refuge Revenue Sharing Fund (RRSF) was enacted in response to the concern of local governments regarding losses to their tax base due to the presence of federally owned land under the jurisdiction of the Fish and Wildlife Service. This report outlines recent history of RRSF payment levels. It examines the RRSF and describes how the fund differs in its treatment of reserved and acquired lands under the jurisdiction of FWS. The report also examines the Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program in detail.
Date: March 6, 1990
Creator: Corn, M. Lynne
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Assault Weapons Ban: Review of Federal Laws Controlling Possessions of Certain Firearms

Description: This report reviews the 1994 assault weapons ban, which is effective for ten years on 19 types of semiautomatic assault weapons. The Act builds upon a 60-year history of federal regulation of firearms. The report also summarizes the pre-1994 federal gun control laws, analyzes the major cases relating to constitutional and statutory challenges to these laws, and reviews judicial and legislative developments since enactment of the ban.
Date: December 1, 1995
Creator: Schrader, Dorothy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Endangered Species Act and Private Property

Description: If the 103rd Congress embarks upon an effort to reauthorize the Endangered Species Act (ESA), it will run into an old acquaintance: the property rights issue. As now written, the ESA has at least the potential to curtail property rights (whatever its actual impact as implemented may be). This report explores the legal repercussions of those impacts, especially whether they constitute takings of property under the fifth amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
Date: March 7, 1993
Creator: Meltz, Robert
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The "Son of Sam" Case: Legislative Implications

Description: In Simon & Schuster, Inc. v. Members of the new York State Crime Victims Board, the U.S. Supreme Court held that New York State's "Son of Sam" law was inconsistent with the First Amendment's guarantee of freedom of speech and press. This report examines the Supreme Court decision and then considers whether its rationale renders the federal law unconstitutional. Concluding that it likely does, the report considers whether it would be possible to enact a constitutional Son-of-Sam statute. Finally, the report takes note of some state Son-of-Sam statutes that have been enacted since the Supreme Court decision.
Date: November 30, 1998
Creator: Cohen, Henry
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. Economic Sanctions Through 1996

Description: Since the early 1960s, the United States has imposed a range of economic sanctions on Cuba, the most prominent of which is a comprehensive embargo prohibiting trade with Cuba. This Congressional Research Service report first provides an overview of U.S.-Cuba relations and U.S. policy toward Cuba. It then examines the history and current legislative and executive authorities of the various components of U.S. sanctions against Cuba, including aid, trade, and other restrictions.
Date: November 21, 1996
Creator: Rennack, Dianne E. & Sullivan, Mark P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department