Congressional Research Service Reports - 517 Matching Results

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Brexit at a Pivotal Moment
This report discusses the draft withdrawal agreement in the the United Kingdom's (UK's) expected withdrawal from the European Union (EU), known as Brexit. It also summarizes issues for the U.S. Congress to consider in regard to Brexit.
Iran Sanctions
This report discusses U.S. sanctions against Iran and the 2016 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) nuclear agreement which led to the lifting of sanctions based on nuclear proliferation in Iran. It outlines the various sanctions against Iran and their current implementation status, international efforts to bring about compliance, and their effects; it also addresses recent discussions regarding President's Trump announcement that the U.S. was decertifying the nuclear agreement and the possibility of reinstating certain sanctions.
The "National Security Exception" and the World Trade Organization
This report examines the meaning of the national security exception in Article XXI of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT)--a provision also implicated in a recent World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute between Russia and Ukraine; a blockade of Qatar by Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates; and a few other disputes.
U.S. Sanctions on Russia
This report provides a comprehensive overview of U.S. sanctions against Russia. It provides an overview of U.S. sanctions authorities and tools; describes various sanctions regimes that have been used and entities or that are available for this purpose, addressing authorities, tools, targets, and historical context; briefly discusses countersanctions by Russia; addresses the evolution of U.S. coordination with the European Union; and assesses the economic impact of sanctions on Russia at the level of the national economy and individual firms.
U.S. Tariff Policy: Overview
This report provides a brief overview of United States tariff policy. A tariff is a customs duty levied on imported and exported goods and services, typically used to protect domestic industries or as leverage in trade negotiations and disputes.
Cloture Attempts on Nominations: Data and Historical Development Through November 20, 2013
This report discusses topics regarding cloture as a means to limit debate and overcome a possible filibuster.
Former Speakers of the House: Office Allowances, Franking Privileges, and Staff Assistance
This report discusses the allowance former Speakers of the House of Representatives were provided upon their departure. This allowance began in 1970 and was repealed with the passage of the legislative branch appropriations act for FY2019, P.L. 115-244.
Global Trade Imbalances
This report discusses the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) July 2018 report on global trade imbalances that identifies countries with "excessive" current account balances and exchange rates that are "misaligned." The current account is a broad measure of a country's global economic engagement and is comprised of trade in goods, services, and official flows.
South Sudan's Civil War: Nearly 400,000 Estimated Dead
This report discusses the impact of the civil war in South Sudan, which has been ongoing since December 2013.
The "Flores Settlement" and Alien Families Apprehended at the U.S. Border: Frequently Asked Questions
This report answers frequently asked legal questions pertaining to the Flores Settlement and the settlement's impact on the detention of alien families apprehended at or near the U.S. border. In particular, the report addresses (1) background of the litigation, (2) how the Settlement restricts DHS's power to keep families in detention, (3) the relationship between the Ms. L. litigation and the Settlement, (4) the executive branch's policy options under the Settlement, and (5) the extent to which either the executive branch or Congress can override or modify the terms of the Flores Settlement.
U.S. Trade Debates: Select Disputes and Actions
This report discusses a number of significant trade disputes involving the United States over the past 100 years. It is a response to the 271 active trade disputes currently being addressed in the World Trade Organization (WTO) that involve the United States.
Boko Haram and the Islamic State's West Africa Province
This report discusses the terrorist group Boko Haram, including the history of the group, leadership and group divisions, objectives and areas of operation, capabilities, and relationships with other terrorist groups.
Justice Kennedy Retires: Initial Considerations for Congress
This report discusses the retirement of Justice Anthony Kennedy from the Supreme Court. In so doing, this post provides a broad overview of key legal issues Congress (and, more specifically the Senate, through its advice and consent role) may wish to consider as it reflects on Justice Kennedy's jurisprudence and how his eventual successor might shape the future of the Court, Congress, and the nation as a whole.
Permitting for Pesticide Discharges into Navigable Waters: Issues and Legislation in the 115th Congress
This report discusses the pesticide general permit (PGP), which is required for discharges of biological pesticides and chemical pesticides that leave a residue in navigable waters. Possible actions from the 115th Congress are also discussed.
Trade Deficits and U.S. Trade Policy
This report examines the components of the U.S. trade deficit in terms of the merchandise trade account and the broader current account. It also assesses the relationship between the trade deficit and U.S. free trade agreements, perceived unfair treatment in trading relationships, the trade deficit and U.S. rates of unemployment, and the impact of tariffs on the U.S. trade deficit, as well as raises issues for potential congressional consideration.
FHA-Insured Home Loans: An Overview
This report provides an overview of the Federal Housing Administration's (FHA) loan programs.
An Introduction to the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit
This report provides an overview of the low-income tax credit.
Blockchain: Background and Policy Issues
This report explains the technologies which underpin blockchain digital financial ledgers, how blockchain works, potential applications for blockchain, concerns with it, and potential considerations for Congress.
Education-Related Regulatory Flexibilities, Waivers, and Federal Assistance in Response to Disasters and National Emergencies
This report is intended to inform Congress of existing statutory and regulatory provisions that may aid in responding to future disasters and national emergencies that may affect the provision of or access to education and highlight the actions of previous Congresses to provide additional recovery assistance. This report reflects the most recently available guidance, as of the date of publication, related to education-related disaster response and flexibilities. It will be updated should new or additional statutes be enacted or guidance be issued.
EPA's Proposal to Repeal the Clean Power Plan: Benefits and Costs
This report discusses the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) plan for repealing the Clean Power Plan and the new plans costs and benefits.
The Social Security Retirement Age
This report discusses the social security retirement age and the differences in monthly benefits received by individuals taking social security early or after full retirement age (FRA). Increases in the retirement age and various proposals related to changes in the timing of benefits is also discussed.
State Minimum Wages: An Overview
This report begins with a brief discussion of Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) minimum wage coverage. It then provides a summary of state minimum wage laws, followed by an examination of rates and mechanisms of adjustments in states with minimum wage levels above the FLSA rate (Table 1 provides summary data). Next, the report discusses the interaction of federal and state minimum wages over time, and finally, the Appendix provides detailed information on the major components of minimum wage policies in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
CRS Products on North Korea
This report provides a listing of CRS reports related to North Korea, organized by broad topical categories. It also includes contact information for CRS experts on various aspects of North Korea.
Direct Overt U.S. Appropriations for and Military Reimbursements to Pakistan, Fiscal Year 2002-Fiscal Year 2018
This report provides a table of data outlining direct overt U.S. aid appropriations and military reimbursements to Pakistan including number for fiscal years 2002-2011 (combined), fiscal years 2012-2016 (individually), an estimate for 2017, and the requested amount for 2018.
Federal Disaster Assistance: The National Flood Insurance Program and Other Federal Disaster Assistance Programs Available to Individuals and Households After a Flood
This report provides an overview of the assistance available to individuals and households following a flood and provides links to more comprehensive guidance on both flood insurance and disaster assistance.
Federal Role in Voter Registration: The National Voter Registration Act of 1993 and Subsequent Developments
This report first provides a brief background on the federal role in voter registration and the passage of the National Voter Registration Act of 1993 (NVRA), followed by a discussion of the key components of NVRA. The implementation of NVRA, subsequent modifications to its provisions, and ongoing considerations related to federal voter registration are also discussed. The final sections of this report provide descriptions of types of common legislative proposals addressing voter registration, with a full list of related bills introduced in the 115th Congress to date provided in the Appendix.
Federally Supported Water Supply and Wastewater Treatment Programs
This report provides background information on the types of water supply and wastewater treatment projects traditionally funded by the federal government and the existing programs to assist communities with water supply and wastewater treatment.
Funding Gaps and Government Shutdowns: CRS Experts
This report provides the names of CRS staff who specialize in each departmental area that is funded by annual appropriations and thus most affected by government shutdowns.
Navy Ford (CVN-78) Class Aircraft Carrier Program: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and potential oversight issues for Congress on the Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) class aircraft carrier program. The Navy's proposed FY2018 budget requested a total of $4,461.8 million in procurement funding for the program.
Navy Virginia (SSN-774) Class Attack Submarine Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the Virginia-class nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSN) program. The Navy's proposed FY2018 budget requests $5,225.9 million in procurement and advance procurement (AP) funding for the program.
Presidential Appointments to Full-Time Positions in Independent and Other Agencies During the 114th Congress
This report identifies all nominations during the 114th Congress that were submitted to the Senate for full-time positions in 40 organizations in the executive branch (27 independent agencies, 6 agencies in the Executive Office of the President [EOP], and 7 multilateral organizations) and 4 agencies in the legislative branch. The tables include full-time positions confirmed by the Senate, pay levels for these positions, and appointment action within each agency, with additional summary information across all agencies in an appendix.
Presidential Appointments to Full-Time Positions on regulatory and Other Collegial Boards and Commissions, 114th Congress
This report identifies all nominations submitted to the Senate for full-time positions on 34 boards and commissions during the 114th Congress. Information for each board and commission is presented in profiles and tables, listing full-time positions confirmed by the Senate, pay levels for these positions, incumbents as of the end of the 114th Congress, incumbents' parties (where balance is required), and appointment action within each board or commission. Additional summary information across all 34 boards and commissions appears in an appendix.
The Supplemental Poverty Measure: Its Core Concepts, Development, and Use
This report describes the Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM), how it was developed, how it differs from the official poverty measure, and the insights it can offer.
Who's the Boss at the CFPB?
This report discusses an ongoing dispute over who the new acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is following the resignation of the past director on Nov. 24., 2017. President Trump appointed Mick Mulvaney as the acting director, but the past director had already appointed Leandra English who has filed a lawsuit and asked for a temporary restraining order preventing Mulvaney from performing the duties of director. This report outlines the merits of the case and the President's power to fill vacancies under the Vacancies Act.
Amtrak: Overview
This report provides an overview of the Amtrak rail service, Topics discussed are funding sources and shortfalls, current and proposed infrastructure, current ridership, on-time arrival improvements needed, service areas, and private passenger rail initiatives in Texas, Florida, and California.
Hurricanes Irma and Maria: Impact on Caribbean Countries and Foreign Territories
This report discuses the effects of Hurricanes Irma and Maria on Caribbean countries and foreign territories and provides brief descriptions of the extent of damage to Antigua and Barbuda, St. Martin/St. Maarten, Cuba, and Dominica. Current U.S. aid efforts and funds are discussed along with the international humanitarian response.
Navy Frigate (FFG[X]) Program: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides background information and discusses potential issues for Congress regarding the Navy's FFG(X) program, a program to procure a new class of guided-missile frigates. The FFG(X) program was initiated as part of the Navy's FY2018 budget submission. The Navy wants to procure the first FFG(X) in FY2020. The Navy's proposed FY2018 budget requests $143.5 million in research and development funding for the program. The FFG(X) program presents several potential oversight issues for Congress. Congress's decisions on the program could affect Navy capabilities and funding requirements and the shipbuilding industrial base.
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA): Resources for Frequently Asked Questions
This report provides resources to help congressional staff respond to constituents' frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the law. The report lists selected resources regarding consumers, employers, and other stakeholders, with a focus on federal sources. It also lists Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports that summarize the ACA's provisions.
Small Business Size Standards: A Historical Analysis of Contemporary Issues
This report provides a historical examination of the SBA's size standards and assesses competing views concerning how to define a small business. It also discusses P.L. 112-239, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013, which requires the SBA to make available a justification when establishing or approving a size standard that the size standard is appropriate for each individual industry classification. It addresses the SBA's recent practice of combining size standards within industrial groups as a means to reduce the complexity of its size standards and to provide greater consistency for industrial classifications that have similar economic characteristics; P.L. 114-328, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017, which authorizes the SBA to establish different size standards for agricultural enterprises using existing methods and appeal processes.
Business Tax Provisions That Expired in 2016 ("Tax Extenders")
This report briefly summarizes and discusses the economic impact of selected business-related tax provisions that expired at the end of 2016. Types of business provisions covered are special business investment (cost recovery), economic development, and other miscellaneous business-related matters.
Maternal and Child Health Services Block Grant: Background and Funding
This report provides background and funding information on the Maternal and Child Health (MCH)Services Block Grant. It also includes select program and health expenditure data to provide context on issues that Congress and HRSA have sought to address through this block grant program.
Presidential Pardons: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
This report provides a general overview of the pardon power and briefly addresses a few frequently-asked legal questions concerning its scope and application, such as: whether the President can issue a "prospective pardon, pardon himself or issue "secret" pardons, whether the acceptance of a pardon is an admission of guilt, and whether Congress can regulate the President's pardon power.
State Innovation Waivers: Frequently Asked Questions
This report answers nine frequently asked questions about the State Innovation Waiver program under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act that allows states to obtain waivers from certain areas of the program and instead use their own state run processes.
Honduras: Background and U.S. Relations
This report analyzes political, economic, and security conditions in Honduras. It also examines issues in U.S.-Honduran relations that have been of particular interest to Congress, including foreign assistance, migration, security cooperation, human rights, and trade and investment.
NAFTA and Motor Vehicle Trade
This report discusses the development of U.S. motor vehicle production under the North American Free Trade Act (NAFTA) and analyzes the North American motor vehicle market, including production, plant locations, and continental trade patterns. It summarizes the motor vehicle rules of origin in NAFTA and compares them with similar requirements in other trade agreements, and examines how the potential changes in NAFTA might affect the motor vehicle and motor vehicle parts industries in the United States.
Ongoing Section 232 Steel and Aluminium Investigations
This report discuses two investigations by the Department of Commerce related to Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 which allows the President to impose tariffs or quotas on imported goods if it is in the interest of national security. These investigations are being conducted on the steel and aluminium industries to determine whether the President can and whether he should impose import restrictions. Mixed reactions to the investigations and proposals are also discussed.
Climate Change: Frequently Asked Questions About the 2015 Paris Agreement
This report discusses the frequently asked questions about the 2015 Paris Agreement (PA). The PA opened for signature by Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) on April 22, 2016, at U.N. headquarters in New York City.
The Coast Guard's Role in Safeguarding Maritime Transportation: Selected Issues
This report discusses the the U.S. Coast Guard responsibility for safeguarding vessel traffic on the nation's coastal and inland waterways.
Defense: FY2017 Budget Request, Authorization, and Appropriations
This report discusses the current administration's request of $523.9 billion to cover the fiscal year 2017 discretionary "base budget" of the Department of Defense (DOD).
Help Wanted: Supreme Court Holds Vacancies Act Prohibits Nominees from Serving as Acting Officers
This report discusses the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998 and a recent Supreme Court case decision in "NLRB v SW General Inc." related to acting officials filling Presidential nominated positions under the Vacancies Act.