Congressional Research Service Reports - 149 Matching Results

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Detention of U.S. Persons as Enemy Belligerents

Description: The detainee provisions passed as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for FY2012 affirm that the Authorization for Use of Military Force in response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, authorizes the detention of persons captured in connection with hostilities. This report provides a background to the legal issues presented, followed by a brief introduction to the law of war pertinent to the detention of different categories of individuals. An overview of U.S. practice during wartime to detain persons deemed dangerous to the national security is presented.
Date: April 11, 2012
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Legislative Options for Financing Water Infrastructure

Description: This report addresses several options being considered by Congress to address the financing needs of local communities for wastewater and drinking water infrastructure projects and to decrease or close the gap between available funds and projected needs. Six options that are reflected in current or recent legislative proposals, including budgetary implications, are discussed.
Date: April 3, 2012
Creator: Copeland, Claudia; Mallett, William J. & Maguire, Steven
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Dominican Republic-Central America- United States Free Trade Agreement (CAFTADR): Developments in Trade and Investment

Description: On August 5, 2004, the United States entered into the Dominican Republic-Central America-United States Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA-DR). This permanent, comprehensive, and reciprocal trade agreement eliminates tariff and non-tariff barriers to two-way trade, building on unilateral trade preferences begun under the 1983 Caribbean Basin Initiative (CBI). CAFTA-DR reinforces the idea that growth in trade correlates closely with policies that promote economic stability, private investment in production, public investment in education, infrastructure, logistics, and good governance in general.
Date: April 9, 2012
Creator: Hornbeck, J. F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report provides background information and oversight issues for Congress on the Virginia class nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSN) program. The two Virginia-class boats requested for procurement in FY2013 are the final two in a group of eight covered by a multiyear procurement (MYP) arrangement for the period FY2009-FY2013. Issues for Congress include whether or not to approve the MYP arrangement request, whether to restore procurement of a second Virginia-class boat in FY2014, and the Virginia-class procurement rate in general.
Date: April 2, 2012
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Western Sahara

Description: This report discusses how Morocco and the independence-seeking Popular Front for the Liberation of Saqiat al Hamra and Rio de Oro (Polisario) have been vying for control of the Western Sahara, a former Spanish territory, since the 1970s. The report discusses recent settlement attempts, as well as how the Western Sahara issue has affected Algerian-Moroccan bilaterial relations, Moroccan relations with the African Union, and regional cooperation on economic and security issues. The report also discusses the United States' involvement in and stance on the issue.
Date: April 5, 2012
Creator: Arieff, Alexis
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Peace Corps: Current Issues

Description: In 2012, the 112th Congress is considering the President's annual funding request for the Peace Corps, efforts to reauthorize the Peace Corps, and related issues. Current issues include the extent to which there is available funding for Peace Corps expansion, whether the Peace Corps has the institutional capacity to expand, and whether volunteers are able to function in a safe and secure environment.
Date: April 4, 2012
Creator: Tarnoff, Curt
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. National Science Foundation: Major Research Equipment and Facility Construction

Description: The Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction (MREFC) account of the National Science Foundation (NSF) supports the acquisition and construction of major research facilities and equipment that are to extend the boundaries of science, engineering, and technology. The Administration's FY2013 budget request for the NSF is $7,373.1 million, a 4.8% increase over the FY2012 estimated level of $7,033.1 million. Included in the request total is $196.2 million for MREFC, slightly below the FY2012 estimate of $197.1 million.
Date: April 4, 2012
Creator: Matthews, Christine M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Kuwait: Security, Reform, and U.S. Policy

Description: Because of its location and close cooperation with the United States, Kuwait is central to U.S. efforts to remain engaged in the northern Persian Gulf region following the completion of the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq at the end of 2011. Kuwait's ruling elites have been in a power struggle for nearly six years, but Kuwait has not faced the mass popular unrest that other governments throughout the Middle East have faced in 2011-2012.This report discusses Kuwait's relations with other countries in the Middle East.
Date: April 11, 2012
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Irregular Warfare and Counterterrorism Operations: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: The Navy for several years has carried out a variety of irregular warfare (IW) and counterterrorism (CT) activities. Among the most readily visible of the Navy's recent IW operations have been those carried out by Navy sailors serving ashore in Afghanistan and Iraq. The May 1-2, 2011, U.S. military operation in Abbottabad, Pakistan, that killed Osama bin Laden reportedly was carried out by a team of 23 Navy special operations forces. The Navy's IW and CT activities pose a number of potential oversight issues for Congress, including the definition of Navy IW activities and Navy budgeting.
Date: April 6, 2012
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. Foreign Aid to the Palestinians

Description: The U.S. government has committed over $4 billion in bilateral assistance to the Palestinians Since the establishment of limited Palestinian self-rule in the West Bank and Gaza Strip in the mid-1990s. This aid has been requested to support prevention/combating against terrorism, creating coexistence with Israel and self-governance, and meeting humanitarian needs.
Date: April 4, 2012
Creator: Zanotti, Jim
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Protecting Classified Information and the Rights of Criminal Defendants: The Classified Information Procedures Act

Description: A criminal prosecution involving classified information may cause tension between the government's interest in protecting classified information and the criminal defendant's right to a constitutionally valid trial. In some cases, a defendant may threaten to disclose classified information in an effort to gain leverage. Concerns about this practice, referred to as "graymail," led the 96th Congress to enact the Classified Information Procedures Act to provide uniform procedures for prosecutions involving classified information.
Date: April 2, 2012
Creator: Liu, Edward C. & Garvey, Todd
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Rare Earth Elements in National Defense: Background, Oversight Issues, and Options for Congress

Description: Some Members of Congress have expressed concern over U.S. acquisition of rare earth materials composed of rare earth elements used in various components of defense weapon systems. On March 13, 2012, President Obama announced that the United States had joined with Japan and the European Union to bring a World Trade Organization joint dispute resolution case against China because of China's restrictive policies on rare earths and other minerals. Congress may encourage DOD to develop a collaborative, long-term, well-thought-out strategy designed to identify any material weaknesses and vulnerabilities associated with rare earths and to protect long-term U.S. national security interests.
Date: April 11, 2012
Creator: Grasso, Valerie Bailey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Hydraulic Fracturing and Safe Drinking Water Act Issues

Description: This report reviews past and proposed treatment of hydraulic fracturing under the Safe Water Drinking Ace, the principal federal statute for regulating the underground injection of fluids to protect groundwater sources of drinking water. It reviews current provisions for regulating underground injection activities, and discusses some possible implications of, and issues associated with, enactment of legislation authorizing the Environmental Protection Agency to regulate hydraulic fracturing under this statute.
Date: April 10, 2012
Creator: Tiemann, Mary & Vann, Adam
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Pakistan: U.S. Foreign Assistance

Description: The 112th Congress has been focused measures to reduce the federal budget deficit. This backdrop may influence congressional debate over the third-ranking U.S. aid recipient, Pakistan-a country vital to U.S. national security interests but that some say lacks accountability and even credibility.
Date: April 10, 2012
Creator: Epstein, Susan B. & Kronstadt, K. Alan
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell": Issues for Congress

Description: On December 22, 2010, President Obama signed into law legislation calling for the repeal of the existing law barring open homosexuality in the military by prescribing a series of steps that must take place before repeal occurs. One step was fulfilled on July 22, 2011, when the President signed the certification of the process ending the Don't Ask, Don't Tell policy, which was repealed on September 20, 2011. This report considers issues that Congress may wish to consider as the repeal process proceeds.
Date: April 5, 2012
Creator: Burrelli, David F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Women in Combat: Issues for Congress

Description: This report looks at the history of women in US military roles and combat since the 1990's. It also discusses critic's views of exclusionary policy as a civil rights issue.
Date: April 5, 2012
Creator: Burrelli, David F.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

U.S. Energy: Overview and Key Statistics

Description: Energy supplies and prices are major economic factors in the United States, and energy markets are volatile and unpredictable. Thus, energy policy has been a recurring issue for Congress since the first major crisis in the 1970s. As an aid in policy making, this report presents a current and historical view of the supply and consumption of various forms of energy.
Date: April 11, 2012
Creator: Behrens, Carl E. & Glover, Carol
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Nuclear Aircraft Carrier (CVN) Homeporting at Mayport: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the Navy's proposal to homeport a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier (CVN) at Mayport, FL. Transferring a CVN from Norfolk, VA, to Mayport would shift from Norfolk to Mayport the local economic activity associated with homeporting a CVN, which some sources estimate as being worth hundreds of millions of dollars per year.
Date: April 6, 2012
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The G-20 and International Economic Cooperation: Background and Implications for Congress

Description: The G-20 is an international forum for discussing and coordinating economic policies among major advanced and emerging economies. Congress may want to exercise oversight over the Administration's participation in the G-20 process, including the policy commitments that Administration is making in the G-20 and the policies it is encouraging other G-20 countries to pursue.
Date: April 12, 2012
Creator: Nelson, Rebecca M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Ohio Replacement (SSBN[X]) Ballistic Missile Submarine Program: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report discusses the Navy's plan to develop and design a class of 12 next-generation ballistic missile submarines, or SSBN(X)s, as replacements for the 14 Ohio class SSBNs currently in operation. The report explores certain related issues for Congress, including the affordability of the project and its potential impact on other Navy shipbuilding programs, alternatives to the program, and which shipyard or shipyards will build the proposed ships.
Date: April 5, 2012
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Program: Background, Issues, and Options for Congress

Description: This report provides background information and potential issues for Congress on the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS), a relatively inexpensive Navy surface combatant equipped with modular "plug-and-fight" mission packages. The Navy's proposed FY2013 budget requests funding for the procurement of four LCSs. Current issues for Congress concerning the LCS program include the program's mission modules, the combat survivability of the LCS, hull cracking and engine problems on LCS-1, and corrosion on LCS-2.
Date: April 6, 2012
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Fannie Mae's and Freddie Mac's Financial Problems

Description: This report discusses the continuing conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac at a time of uncertainty in the housing, mortgage, and financial markets has raised doubts about the future of these enterprises, which are chartered by Congress as government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) and whose debts are widely believed to be implicitly guaranteed by the federal government.
Date: April 2, 2012
Creator: Weiss, N. Eric
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department