Congressional Research Service Reports - Browse

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The First Day of a New Congress: A Guide to Proceedings on the House Floor

Description: This report focuses on the floor activities of the House of Representatives during its first formal session in a new Congress, and serves as a guide for those participating in or watching these proceedings.
Date: November 3, 2016
Creator: Schneider, Judy & Koempel, Michael L.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Pipeline Security: Domestic Threats

Description: This report discusses recent acts of sabotage against U.S. oil pipelines by environmental activists have raised concern about the security of the nation's energy pipelines and the federal program to protect them.
Date: November 3, 2016
Creator: Parfomak, Paul W.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Treasury's Recent Report on Foreign Exchange Rate Policies

Description: This report responds to the new reporting requirements on exchange rates mandated in the Trade Facilitation and Enforcement Act of 2015 (P.L. 114-125), passed by Congress and signed by the President in February 2016.
Date: November 3, 2016
Creator: Nelson, Rebecca M.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Congress's Early Organization Meetings

Description: This report discusses Congress's early organization meetings. The purposes of these meetings are both educational and organizational. Educational sessions range from legislative procedures and staff hiring to current issues.
Date: November 2, 2016
Creator: Schneider, Judy
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Recent State Election Law Challenges: In Brief

Description: This report begins by setting forth key constitutional provisions relevant to recent state election law challenges. Next, it discusses federal statutory provisions contained in the Voting Rights Act and the National Voter Registration Act and briefly examines pertinent Supreme Court precedent. Then, based on that legal framework, it provides an overview of several recent challenges to state election laws in Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio, and Texas that resulted in major decisions by the various federal courts of appeals as illustrative examples of the types of challenges that have been playing out in the courts. Finally, the report discusses some potential implications of these challenges.
Date: November 2, 2016
Creator: Whitaker, L. P.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Funding and Financing Highways and Public Transportation

Description: This report begins with a discussion of the problems associated with the trust fund financing system (which supports both federal highway and public transportation programs) and then explores possible options for financing surface transportation infrastructure.
Date: November 1, 2016
Creator: Kirk, Robert S. & Mallett, William J.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Regulation of Debit Interchange Fees

Description: This report provides a description of the debit payments process and network pricing, as well as an overview of the effects of the Durbin Amendement implemented by the Federal Reserve which includes a cap on the interchange fee for large issuers. In particular, the Durbin Amendment is discussed in light of comments by Federal Reserve Board Chairman Ben Bernanke.
Date: November 1, 2016
Creator: Getter, Darryl E.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Security Cooperation: Comparison of Proposed Provisions for the FY2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA)

Description: This report discusses the FY2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that could significantly alter the way in which the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) engages and partners with foreign security forces.
Date: November 1, 2016
Creator: Rosen, Liana W.; McInnis, Kathleen J.; Skorupski, Bolko J. & Blanchard, Lauren P.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Department of Homeland Security Preparedness Grants: A Summary and Issues

Description: This report a brief summary of the development of the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS's) role in providing homeland security assistance, a summary of the current homeland security programs managed by DHS, and a discussion of the following policy questions: (1) the purpose and number of programs; (2) the use of homeland security assistance program funding; and (3) the funding amounts for the programs.
Date: October 28, 2016
Creator: Reese, Shawn
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Social Security Retirement Age

Description: This report discusses the two important ages that may affect a worker's plans to claim Social Security retired-worker benefits. Workers may claim full Social Security benefits at the full retirement age (FRA), which is rising gradually to age 67 for workers who were born in 1960 or later. Retired workers may claim benefits as early as age 62, which is known as the early eligibility age (EEA). Social Security benefits are reduced, however, for every month that retired worker benefits are claimed before the FRA.
Date: October 28, 2016
Creator: Liou, Wayne
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

DHS Appropriations FY2017: Security, Enforcement, and Investigations

Description: This report is part of a suite of reports that discuss appropriations for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for FY2017. It specifically discusses appropriations for the components of DHS included in the second title of the homeland security appropriations bill-- Customs and Border Protection, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Transportation Security Administration, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the U.S. Secret Service. Collectively, Congress has labeled these components in recent years as "Security, Enforcement, and Investigations.
Date: October 27, 2016
Creator: Painter, William L.; Argueta, Carla N.; Elias, Bart; Frittelli, John & Siskin, Alison
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Advisory Committees: An Introduction and Overview

Description: This report offers a history of the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA), examines its current requirements, and provides data on federal advisory committees' operations and costs.
Date: October 27, 2016
Creator: Ginsberg, Wendy & Burga, Casey
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security: Calculation and History of Taxing Benefits

Description: This report discusses the calculations that go into taxing Social Security benefits, which prior to 1984 were exempt from taxation but have since been taxed at gradually increasing levels.
Date: October 27, 2016
Creator: Liou, Wayne & Whittaker, Julie M.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Social Security: Cost-of-Living Adjustments

Description: This report discusses the issues surrounding Social Security recipients that usually receive an annual cost-of-living adjustment (COLA).
Date: October 27, 2016
Creator: Whittaker, Julie M. & Liou, Wayne
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Treatment of Noncitizens Under the Affordable Care Act

Description: This report provides information regarding the treatment of noncitizens under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) including definitions of "lawfully present," the health insurance mandate, exchanges, and ACA changes to Medicaid. It also discusses the verification of alien status under the ACA and related legislation in the 113th Congress.
Date: October 27, 2016
Creator: Siskin, Alison
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Ukraine: Current Issues and U.S. Policy

Description: This report provides an overview of the situation in Ukraine. Following the February 2014 collapse of the Kremlin-supported government of President Viktor Yanukovych, there was an emergence of a pro-Western, pro-reform government and an energized public generally anxious to lessen Moscow's influence, committed to addressing the need for serious reform and determined to draw closer to Europe and the United States.
Date: October 27, 2016
Creator: Morelli, Vincent L.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Unfunded Mandates Reform Act: History, Impact, and Issues

Description: This report examines debates over what constitutes an unfunded federal mandate and the Unfunded Mandate Reform Act's (UMRA's) implementation. It also discusses particular mandates and procedures associated with UMRA, and assesses UMRA's impact on federal mandates and arguments concerning UMRA's future, focusing on UMRA's definitions, exclusions, and exceptions that currently exempt many federal actions with potentially significant financial impacts on nonfederal entities.
Date: October 27, 2016
Creator: Dilger, Robert J. & Beth, Richard S.
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Department of Veterans Affairs FY2017 Appropriations

Description: This report provides an overview of Veterans Affairs (VA) appropriations; for a discussion on military construction appropriations. The VA provides a range of benefits and services to veterans and eligible dependents who meet certain criteria as authorized by law.
Date: October 26, 2016
Creator: Viranga Panangala, Sidath
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Did a Thermostat Break the Internet?

Description: This report discusses cyber security and the challenges the new form of hacking poses -- specifically, the attacks by a common malicious botnet named Mirai.
Date: October 26, 2016
Creator: Jaikaran, Chris
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Navy Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) Program: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report provides background information and issues for Congress on the Aegis ballistic missile defense (BMD) program, which is carried out by the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) and the Navy, and gives Navy Aegis cruisers and destroyers a capability for conducting BMD operations. Congress's decisions on the Aegis BMD program could significantly affect U.S. BMD capabilities and funding requirements, and the BMD-related industrial base.
Date: October 25, 2016
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cybersecurity: Legislation, Hearings, and Executive Branch Documents

Description: This report provides links to cybersecurity-related committee hearings in the 112th, 113th, and 114th Congresses. It also provides a list of executive orders and presidential directives pertaining to information and computer security.
Date: October 21, 2016
Creator: Tehan, Rita
Item Type: Report
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department