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Drug Control: International Policy and Options
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.
Economic Sanctions to Achieve U.S. Foreign Policy Goals: Discussion and Guide to Current Law
This report provides background on foreign policy sanctions. It addresses the following questions: Why do we apply sanctions? What objectives does the U.S. government seek to achieve when it imposes sanctions? Who imposes sanctions? What tools are available? How likely is it that sanctions will achieve the stated goal? What secondary consequences might sanctions have? What change is required for the sanctions to be lifted? Would multilateral sanctions be more desirable and achievable? The report also provides an uncomplicated map of where sanctions policies and options currently may be found in U.S. law.
The Berry Amendment: Requiring Defense Procurement to Come from Domestic Sources
The Berry Amendment requires the Department of Defense (DOD) to give preference in procurement to domestically produced, manufactured, or home grown products, notably food, clothing, fabrics, and specialty metals. This report examines the original intent and purpose of the Berry Amendment, legislative proposals to amend the application of domestic source restrictions, as well as options for Congress.
Access to Broadband Networks
The purpose of this report is to provide a more concrete discussion of access to wireline broadband networks. To that end, this report provides a discussion of what broadband networks look like; how both consumers and independent applications providers gain access to these networks; and the parameters available to network providers (such as their choices about network architecture, overall bandwidth capacity, bandwidth reserved for their own use, traffic prioritization, the terms and rates for access to their networks and for their retail services) that can affect end users’ and independent applications providers’ access to those networks.
Defense Department Original Transformation Proposal: Compared to Existing Law
The Department of Defense (DOD) has sent the Congress a major proposal entitled “Defense Transformation for the 21st Century Act of 2003”on April 10, 2003. This report briefly summarizes and presents all of the sections of the original DOD proposal in a side by side with the relevant provisions in current law, if they exist, that would have been affected by the proposal. The idea is to provide a “road map” that relates each section of the proposal to existing law. Provisions from the Homeland Security Act (HSA) of 2002 specific to the Department of Homeland Security are separately listed from the rest of the existing law, and are the most recently enacted changes to Title 5.
Clean Air Act Permitting: Status of Implementation
The 1990 Clean Air Act amendments established an operating permit system that is affecting many new and existing sources of air emissions, as well as state and local air pollution control agencies. After delays and early missteps, the operating permit program is moving ahead. All state and local programs have received interim or full approval, and permits are being issued, although at a slower rate than anticipated. However, a number of issues exist. These include the effect of key federal regulations, not yet promulgated, on permit programs and regulated sources; adequacy of state resources; gaining full approval for those permit programs that now have interim approval; and oversight.
Economic Sanctions to Achieve U.S. Foreign Policy Goals: Discussion and Guide to Current Law
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.
Burma: Economic Sanctions
On October 19, 2007, President George W. Bush issued Executive Order 13449. This followed a September 25, 2007 statement by President Bush that sanctions against Burma, which have been in place since 1997, would be tightened to specifically target leading Burmese officials and impose additional financial and travel sanctions. This report provides background information on existing economic sanctions against Burma and possible options to expand sanctions.
Burma: Economic Sanctions
On October 19, 2007, President George W. Bush issued Executive Order 13449. This followed a September 25, 2007 statement by President Bush that sanctions against Burma, which have been in place since 1997, would be tightened to specifically target leading Burmese officials and impose additional financial and travel sanctions. This report provides background information on existing economic sanctions against Burma and possible options to expand sanctions.
International Reaction to the Palestinian Unity Government
This report discusses the new Palestinian unity government, which established in March 2007 complicates U.S. policy toward the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the peace process.
Nuclear, Biological, Chemical, and Missile Proliferation Sanctions: Selected Current Law
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Nuclear, Biological, Chemical, and Missile Proliferation Sanctions: Selected Current Law
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Nuclear, Biological, Chemical, and Missile Proliferation Sanctions: Selected Current Law
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Trade Remedies: "New Shipper" Reviews
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Pharmacy Benefit Managers
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Pipeline Safety and Security: Federal Programs
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President Bush's Proposed Medicare-Endorsed Drug Discount Card Initiative: Status and Issues
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President Bush's Proposed Medicare-Endorsed Drug Discount Card Initiative: Status and Issues
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President Bush's Proposed Medicare-Endorsed Drug Discount Card Initiative: Status and Issues
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Clean Water Act: Legislation Concerning Discharges from Recreational Boats
The Environmental Protection Agency is attempting to develop a regulatory response to a 2006 federal court ruling that vacated a long-standing rule that exempts discharges associated with the normal operation of vessels from permit requirements of the Clean Water Act. Concern that this ruling could require millions of recreational boaters to obtain permits has led to the introduction of legislation to exempt these and other types of vessels from water quality regulation. This report discusses background to the issue; bills introduced in response, two of which were passed by Congress on July 22; and draft permits proposed by EPA on June 17.
Clean Water Act: Legislation Concerning Discharges from Recreational Boats
The Environmental Protection Agency is attempting to develop a regulatory response to a 2006 federal court ruling that vacated a long-standing rule that exempts discharges associated with the normal operation of vessels from permit requirements of the Clean Water Act. Concern that this ruling could require millions of recreational boaters to obtain permits has led to the introduction of legislation to exempt these and other types of vessels from water quality regulation. This report discusses background to the issue; bills introduced in response, two of which were passed by Congress on July 22; and draft permits proposed by EPA on June 17.
Clean Water Act and Total Maximum Daily Loads (TMDLs) of Pollutants
This report discusses the section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act, which requires states to identify waters that are impaired by pollution, even after application of pollution controls. For those waters, states must establish a total maximum daily load (TMDL) of pollutants to ensure that water quality standards can be attained. Implementation was dormant until states and EPA were prodded by lawsuits. The TMDL program has become controversial, in part because of requirements and costs now facing states to implement this 35-year-old provision of the law, as well as industries, cities, farmers, and others who may be required to use new pollution controls to meet TMDL requirements. In July 2000, EPA issued revisions to strengthen the program. The rule was widely criticized, and congressional interest was high. The 2000 rule did not go into effect, and in March 2003, EPA withdrew the rule to consider whether to issue an entirely new rule or other options; no timetable has been announced. Consequently, the program continues to operate under regulations issued in 1992.
Controversies over Redefining “Fill Material” Under the Clean Water Act
On May 3, 2002, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps) announced a final rule redefining two key terms, “fill material” and “discharge of fill material,” in regulations that implement Section 404 of the Clean Water Act. This report discusses the revised rule, focusing on how it changes which material and types of activities are regulated under Section 404 and the significance of these issues, especially for the mining industry.
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.
Energy Tax Incentives: A Comparison of the Senate Finance Committee Bill (S.1149) and the House Bill (H.R.6)
The 108th Congress is considering two major bills to provide tax incentives to increase the supply of, and reduce the demand for, fossil fuels and electricity: S.1149, the Energy Tax Incentives Act of 2003, approved by the Senate Finance Committee (SFC) on April 2, 2003 (superseding S. 597), and H.R. 6, introduced as H.R. 1531 and approved by the House on April 11, 2003, by a vote of 247-175.
Nationwide Permits for Wetlands Projects: Issues and Regulatory Developments
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Nationwide Permits for Wetlands Projects: Permit 26 and Other Issues and Controversies
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Air Quality: Multi-Pollutant Legislation
One approach being proposed to more cost-effectively achieve national air quality goals is a "multi-pollutant" strategy -- a framework based on a consistent set of emissions caps, implemented through emissions trading. This report discusses this strategy and related legislation.
Air Quality: Multi-Pollutant Legislation
One approach being proposed to more cost-effectively achieve national air quality goals is a "multi-pollutant" strategy -- a framework based on a consistent set of emissions caps, implemented through emissions trading. This report discusses this strategy and related legislation.
Civilian Nuclear Waste Disposal
The Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 (NWPA) calls for disposal of spent nuclear fuel in a deep geologic repository that is unlikely to be disturbed for thousands of years. Low-level waste sites are a state responsibility under the Low-Level Radioactive Waste Policy Act of 1980. Pursuant to that act, 10 regional compacts for disposal of low level waste have been approved by Congress. Three commercial low-level waste sites are currently operating, in the states of South Carolina, Utah, and Washington.
Comparing Quota Buyout Payments for Peanuts and Tobacco
The purpose of this analysis is to provide a generally consistent comparison of the benefits provided to peanut quota holders and producers and proposed benefits concerning tobacco. It is not the intention of this analysis to attempt to determine the appropriate size of these buyout payments.
Alternative Transportation Fuels and Vehicles: Energy, Environment, and Development Issues
This report reviews several issues relating to alternative fuels and vehicles, mainly to combat dependence on petroleum imports and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The report discusses the advantages and drawbacks of various alternative fuels and vehicles, as well as related legislation.
High Performance Computers and Export Control Policy: Issues for Congress
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High Performance Computers and Export Control Policy: Issues for Congress
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Drug Control: International Policy and Options
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.
East Central Europe: Status of International Criminal Court (ICC) Exemption Agreements and U.S. Military Assistance
In a broad effort to obtain U.S. exemptions from International Criminal Court (ICC) jurisdiction, the Bush Administration has sought to conclude bilateral agreements worldwide that would prohibit the transfer of U.S. citizens to the ICC. The European Union has strongly promoted the ICC and is opposed to the U.S.- proposed agreements. This report addresses twelve countries of east central Europe affected by the U.S. and European policies – Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Romania, Serbia and Montenegro, Slovakia, and Slovenia – and the status of their varied approaches to the transatlantic disagreement over the ICC.
EPA's Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Program: Highlights of the Final Revised Rule
This report discusses the final rule and the key modifications of the August 1999 proposal. The final rule builds on the current TMDL regulatory program and adds details, specific requirements, and deadlines. It retains the basic elements of the 1999 proposal for more comprehensive identification of impaired waters, schedules and minimum elements for TMDLs, and new public participation requirements. At the same time, dropped from the final rule are several provisions that were most controversial in the proposal, including some potentially affecting agriculture and forestry, one that would have required pollutant discharge offsets in some circumstances, and one that would have required states to identify waters threatened but not yet impaired by pollution
An Examination of the Issues Surrounding Biotechnology Patenting and Its Effect Upon Entrepreneurial Companies
The biotechnology industry is notable both for its heavy concentration of small businesses and its weighty research and development (R&D) expenditures. Given the small size and heavy expenses of many biotechnology firms, their ability to raise venture capital may be of some consequence. The patent law has been identified as a facilitator of these R&D financing efforts. Congress may choose to exercise oversight on these issues. Such consideration would likely include examination of U.S. commitments in international agreements along with other factors.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
In approving the FY2001 agriculture appropriations act, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to Cuba (as enacted in by the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000, or TSRA). Congressional opponents of TSRA's prohibitions on private U.S. financing of agricultural sales, public financing of eligible exports, and tourist travel to Cuba have introduced bills since 2000 to repeal these provisions. Though several amendments to repeal or relax TSRA provisions relative to Cuba were adopted by committees or passed during floor debate, all were dropped in conference action. Administration officials continually signal to conferees they will advise the President to veto any bill that would change TSRA's prohibitions against Cuba.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
In approving the FY2001 agriculture appropriations act, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to Cuba (as enacted in by the Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000, or TSRA). Congressional opponents of TSRA's prohibitions on private U.S. financing of agricultural sales, public financing of eligible exports, and tourist travel to Cuba have introduced bills since 2000 to repeal these provisions. Though several amendments to repeal or relax TSRA provisions relative to Cuba were adopted by committees or passed during floor debate, all were dropped in conference action. Administration officials continually signal to conferees they will advise the President to veto any bill that would change TSRA's prohibitions against Cuba.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
In approving the FY2001 agriculture appropriations act, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106- 387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000, or TSRA). Other provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive. TSRA also gives Congress the authority in the future to veto a President’s proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.
Exempting Food and Agriculture Products from U.S. Economic Sanctions: Status and Implementation
Falling agricultural exports and declining commodity prices led farm groups and agribusiness firms to urge the 106th Congress to pass legislation exempting foods and agricultural commodities from U.S. economic sanctions against certain countries. In completing action on the FY2001 agriculture appropriations bill, Congress codified the lifting of unilateral sanctions on commercial sales of food, agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical products to Iran, Libya, North Korea, and Sudan, and extended this policy to apply to Cuba (Title IX of H.R. 5426, as enacted by P.L. 106-387; Trade Sanctions Reform and Export Enhancement Act of 2000). Related provisions place financing and licensing conditions on sales to these countries. Those that apply to Cuba, though, are permanent and more restrictive than for the other countries. Other provisions give Congress the authority in the future to veto a President's proposal to impose a sanction on the sale of agricultural or medical products.