Congressional Research Service Reports - 50 Matching Results

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VA Housing: Guaranteed Loans, Direct Loans, and Specially Adapted Housing Grants

Description: This report discusses three types of housing assistance-the loan guaranty program, direct loan programs, and Specially Adapted Housing program-their origins, how they operate, and how they are funded. The report also has a section that discusses the default and foreclosure of VA-guaranteed loans.
Date: April 24, 2012
Creator: Perl, Libby
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Force Structure and Shipbuilding Plans: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: The planned size of the Navy, the rate of Navy ship procurement, and the prospective affordability of the Navy's shipbuilding plans have been matters of concern for the congressional defense committees for the past several years. This report looks at the cost of the Navy's 30-year shipbuilding plan in relation to FY2013.
Date: April 24, 2012
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act: History, Impact, and Issues

Description: This report examines debates regarding what constitutes an "unfunded federal mandate" and the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995's (UMRA) implementation. It focuses on UMRA's requirement that the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) issue written cost estimate statements for federal mandates in legislation, its procedures for raising points of order in the House and Senate concerning unfunded federal mandates in legislation, and its requirement that federal agencies prepare written cost estimate statements for federal mandates in rules. It also assesses UMRA's impact on federal mandates and arguments concerning UMRA's future, focusing on UMRA's definitions, exclusions, and exceptions which currently exempt many federal actions with potentially significant financial impacts on nonfederal entities.
Date: April 24, 2012
Creator: Dilger, Robert Jay & Beth, Richard S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Burma's Political Prisoners and U.S. Sanctions

Description: The installation of the Union Government in 2011 and the undertaking of initial reforms have raised the prospects for the resumption of a democratically elected civilian government in Burma after five decades of military rule. The release of Burma's political prisoners has a central role in U.S. policy and Burma's political future. Many of the U.S. sanctions on Burma were implemented after Burma's ruling military junta suppressed protests and detained many political prisoners. In addition, the removal of many of the existing U.S. sanctions requires the release of all political prisoners in Burma.
Date: April 24, 2012
Creator: Martin, Michael F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Iraq: Politics, Governance, and Human Rights

Description: The view of the Administration and others is that Iraqi factions, with U.S. and other help, will be able to work through the severe political disputes and ongoing violence, and will also be willing and able to resist increased Iranian influence in Iraq. The Administration states that U.S. training will continue using programs for Iraq similar to those with other countries in which there is no U.S. troop presence, and about 15,000 U.S. personnel, including contractors, remain in Iraq under State Department authority to exert U.S. influence. Continuing the security relationship in the absence of U.S. troops in Iraq, and developing the civilian bilateral relationship, was the focus of the U.S. visit of Prime Minister Maliki on December 12, 2011.
Date: January 24, 2012
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Pakistan-U.S. Relations

Description: In a security alliance since 2004 and "strategic partners" since 2006, the United States and Pakistan for decades experienced major shifts in the nature and tone of their relations. In the post- 9/11 period, assisting in the creation of a more stable, democratic, and prosperous Pakistan actively combating religious militancy has been among the most important U.S. foreign policy efforts. Pakistan is among the leading recipients of U.S. aid in the post-9/11 period, having been appropriated about $24 billion in assistance and military reimbursements since 2001. FY2013 legislation in the 112th Congress would cut U.S. assistance funding significantly from both the levels requested by the Administration and from those Congress approved for FY2012. Provisions also would introduce more rigorous restrictions and certification requirements on such aid. With anti-American sentiments and xenophobic conspiracy theories rife among ordinary Pakistanis, persistent economic travails and a precarious political setting combine to present serious challenges to U.S. decision makers.
Date: May 24, 2012
Creator: Kronstadt , K. Alan
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Issues in International Trade Law: Restricting Exports of Electronic Waste

Description: Electronic waste (e-waste) is a term that loosely refers to obsolete, broken, or irreparable electronic devices. Because e-waste is generated in high volumes in the United States and contains hazardous materials, it is a growing area of domestic concern. Currently, e-waste is essentially unregulated at the federal level and can be disposed of with common household garbage in municipal solid waste landfills or incinerators. Recently, momentum has developed for domestic legislation restricting U.S. e-waste exports. These restrictions could take many forms, including a partial or total ban on e-waste exports, an e-waste export licensing system, or a quota on e-waste exports. This report looks at how such legislation could affect and work with prior US disposal laws.
Date: February 24, 2012
Creator: Barbour, Emily C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage

Description: This report focuses on the current situation with spent nuclear fuel storage in the United States. It does not address all of the issues associated with permanent disposal of SNF, but rather focuses on the SNF storage situation, primarily at current and former reactor facilities for the potentially foreseeable future.
Date: May 24, 2012
Creator: Werner, James D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

SEC Climate Change Disclosure Guidance: An Overview and Congressional Concerns

Description: Issues regarding the Congressional appeal of the January 27, 2010 SEC-published 'Commission Guidance Regarding Disclosure Related to Climate Change', which clarifies how publicly traded corporations should apply existing SEC disclosure rules to certain mandatory financial filings with the SEC regarding the risk that climate change developments may have on their businesses.
Date: May 24, 2012
Creator: Shorter, Gary
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Taiwan: Major U.S. Arms Sales Since 1990

Description: This report discusses U.S. security assistance to Taiwan, or Republic of China (ROC), including policy issues for Congress and legislation. Congress has oversight of the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA), P.L. 96-8, which has governed arms sales to Taiwan since 1979, when the United States recognized the People's Republic of China (PRC) instead of the ROC. Two other relevant parts of the "one China" policy are the August 17, 1982, U.S.-PRC Joint Communique and the "Six Assurances" to Taiwan. U.S. arms sales to Taiwan have been significant. The United States also expanded military ties with Taiwan after the PRC's missile firings in 1995-1996. However, the U.S.-ROC Mutual Defense Treaty terminated in 1979.
Date: February 24, 2012
Creator: Kan, Shirley A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Syria: Unrest and U.S. Policy

Description: Syria remains mired in political confrontation and violence, and is perched on the edge of civil war. U.S. officials and many analysts believe that President Bashar al Asad, his family members, and his supporters will ultimately be forced from power. President Obama and his Administration have been calling for Asad's resignation since August 2011, and have been vocal advocates for United Nations Security Council action to condemn the Syrian government and end the bloodshed. The United States has closed its embassy in Damascus, and Ambassador Robert Ford has left Syria. In the face of intense domestic and international pressure calling for political change and for an end to violence against civilians, the Asad government has offered limited reforms while also meeting protests and armed attacks with overwhelming force. After a year of unrest and violence, Syria's political crisis is characterized by dilemmas and contradictions, which are discussed in this report.
Date: May 24, 2012
Creator: Sharp, Jeremy M. & Blanchard, Christopher M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

What Is Systemic Risk? Does It Apply to Recent JP Morgan Losses?

Description: Systemic risk refers to the possibility that the financial system as a whole might become unstable, rather than the health of individual market participants. Stable financial systems do not transmit or magnify shocks to the broader economy. A firm, person, government, financial utility, or policy might create systemic risk if (1) its failure causes other failures in a domino effect; (2) news about its assets signals that others with similar assets may also be distressed, called contagion; (3) it contributes to fire sales during price declines; or (4) its absence prevents other firms from using an essential service, called critical functions. This report discusses how systemic risk may apply to JP Morgan's recent losses.
Date: May 24, 2012
Creator: Murphy, Edward V.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Role of Local Food Systems in U.S. Farm Policy

Description: This report looks at the growing popularity of locally produced foods, and how that popularity and regional/local food systems are affected by the reauthorization of the 2008 farm bill.
Date: January 24, 2012
Creator: Johnson, Renée; Cowan, Tadlock & Aussenberg, Randy Alison
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Japan's Possible Entry Into the Trans-Pacific Partnership and Its Implications

Description: This report discusses the effects of the possible entry of Japan to the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations. The TPP issue presents both risks and opportunities for the United States and Japan. On the one hand, it could reinvigorate an economic relationship that has remained steady but stagnant, by forcing the two countries to address long-standing, difficult issues, and allowing them to raise their relationship to a higher level. On the other hand, failure to do so could indicate that the underlying problems are too fundamental to overcome and could set back the relationship.
Date: August 24, 2012
Creator: Cooper, William H. & Manyin, Mark E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Conventional Arms Transfers to Developing Nations, 2004-2011

Description: This report provides Congress with official, unclassified, background data from U.S. government sources on transfers of conventional arms to developing nations by major suppliers for the period 2004 through 2011. All agreement and delivery data in this report for the United States are government-to-government Foreign Military Sales (FMS) transactions. Similar data are provided on worldwide conventional arms transfers by all suppliers, but the principal focus is the level of arms transfers by major weapons suppliers to nations in the developing world.
Date: August 24, 2012
Creator: Grimmett, Richard F. & Kerr, Paul K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The War Powers Resolution: After Thirty-Eight Years

Description: This report discusses and assesses the War Powers Resolution and its application since enactment in 1973, providing detailed background on various cases in which it was used, as well as cases in which issues of its applicability were raised. It will be revised biannually.
Date: September 24, 2012
Creator: Grimmett, Richard F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Mexico: Issues for Congress

Description: This report looks at current U.S. policy towards Mexico and future legislation concerns for the 112th Congress. Although security issues have recently dominated the U.S. relationship with Mexico, analysts predict that bilateral relations may shift towards economic matters once President-elect Enrique Peña Nieto takes office.
Date: September 24, 2012
Creator: Ribando Seelke, Clare
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department