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Temporary Protected Status: Current Immigration Policy and Issues

Description: This report is a brief overview of current policies regarding temporary protected status (TPS), which is relief from removal under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). It includes information about humanitarian migrants, temporary protected status, other blanket forms of relief, nationalities receiving protections, and issues with TPS, as well as recent legislation.
Date: February 18, 2016
Creator: Argueta, Carla N. & Wasem, Ruth Ellen
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

EPA and the Army Corps' Rule to Define "Waters of the United States"

Description: This report describes the revised rule of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) which defines the scope of waters protected under the Clean Water Act (CWA). Agencies refer to this final rule as the Clean Water Rule. This report includes a table comparing the existing regulatory language that defines "waters of the United States" with the revisions.
Date: January 4, 2016
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Shutdown of the Joint North/South Korean Kaesong Industrial Complex

Description: This report briefly discusses the South Korean government's decision to shut down the Kaesong Industrial Complex (KIC), which is an 11-year-old industrial park located in North Korea just across the demilitarized zone where more than 120 South Korean manufacturers employed over 50,000 North Korean workers.
Date: February 11, 2016
Creator: Manyin, Mark E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Pakistan's Nuclear Weapons

Description: This report discusses Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, which probably consists of approximately 110-130 nuclear warheads, although it could have more. Pakistan's nuclear arsenal is widely regarded as designed to dissuade India from taking military action against Pakistan, but Islamabad's expansion of its nuclear arsenal, development of new types of nuclear weapons, and adoption of a doctrine called "full spectrum deterrence" have led to concern about an increased risk of nuclear conflict between Pakistan and India.
Date: February 12, 2016
Creator: Kerr, Paul K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Health Care Spending: Past Trends and Projections

Description: This report focuses on trends in personal health care spending, which includes spending on health care goods and services provided to individuals and excludes expenditures for administrative costs, research, and public health activities. Personal health care expenditures have grown considerably over the past 40 years. It is estimated that personal health spending will exceed $2.9 trillion in 2013.
Date: April 8, 2004
Creator: Morgan, Paulette C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Reserve: Oversight and Disclosure Issues

Description: This report provides an overview of existing Federal Reserve (Fed) oversight and disclosure practices. It also considers the potential impact of greater oversight and disclosure on the Fed's independence and its ability to achieve its macroeconomic and financial stability goals.
Date: January 13, 2016
Creator: Labonte, Marc
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Cyprus: Reunification Proving Elusive

Description: This report provides a brief overview of the history of the negotiations between Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders, a review of the negotiations since 2008, and a description of some of the issues involved in the talks.
Date: January 5, 2016
Creator: Morelli, Vincent L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Trade Negotiations During the 109th Congress

Description: This report discusses trade issues in the 109th Congress. For over 50 years, U.S. trade officials have negotiated multilateral trade agreements to achieve lower trade barriers and rules to cover international trade. During the 108th Congress, U.S. officials negotiated and Congress approved four bilateral free-trade agreements with Australia, Chile, Morocco, and Singapore.
Date: August 3, 2005
Creator: Fergusson, Ian F. & Sek, Lenore M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Retirement Savings Tax Credit: A Fact Sheet

Description: This report discusses the saver's tax credit, under which eligible individuals receive a non-refundable tax credit of up to $1,000 for contributing to a traditional IRA or an employer-sponsored retirement plan that is qualified under §401, §403 or §457 of the Internal Revenue Code. The credit was first available in 2002 but will expire after 2006 unless extended by Congress.
Date: April 1, 2004
Creator: Purcell, Patrick
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Abortion: Justice O'Connor's Opinions

Description: This report examines Justice O'Connor's notable opinions on abortion, and explores her role in the development of the undue burden standard, adopted in 1992. Under the new standard, a reviewing court would consider whether an abortion restriction has the effect of imposing an "undue burden" on a woman's right to obtain an abortion.
Date: July 15, 2005
Creator: Shimabukuro, Jon O.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Electric Grid Physical Security: Recent Legislation

Description: This report briefly discusses legislative initiatives to address the physical safety of electrical transformers and 0other parts of the U.S. electric grid which are vulnerable to damage from theft, vandalism, or terrorist attacks.
Date: January 6, 2016
Creator: Parfomak, Paul W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Detection of Explosives on Airline Passengers: Recommendation of the 9/11 Commission and Related Issues

Description: This report discusses options for airline passenger explosives trace detection, ongoing federal R&D efforts and pilot equipment deployments, and policy issues related to the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (P.L. 108-458). The legislation directs the Department of Homeland Security to place high priority on developing and deploying equipment for passenger explosives screening; requires TSA to submit a strategic plan for deploying such equipment; and authorizes additional research funding.
Date: February 7, 2005
Creator: Shea, Dana A. & Morgan, Daniel
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Iraq: Elections, Government, and Constitution

Description: This report discusses the Iraqi government in the wake of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF). Elections for a transitional National Assembly and government (January 30, 2005), a permanent constitution (October 15), and a permanent (four year) Council of Representatives and government (December 15) have been concluded despite insurgent violence. U.S. officials hope that the high turnout among Sunni Arabs in the December 15 elections -- and post-election bargaining among all factions -- will produce an inclusive government that reduces insurgent violence.
Date: January 20, 2006
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

House Committee Markup: Vehicle for Consideration and Amendment

Description: This report discusses aspects of the process by which House committees mark up and report legislation. The markup begins with the chair calling up a particular measure for consideration by the committee. The next action depends on the nature of the "markup vehicle" (i.e., the text that the chair intends for the committee to amend and report), which may be different from the measure laid before the panel for consideration. The vehicle can come before the committee in several different forms, each of which has its own procedural and political consequences.
Date: June 1, 2006
Creator: Schneider, Judy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Ukraine: Current Issues and U.S. Policy

Description: This report provides an overview of the situation in Ukraine, two years after the February 2014 collapse of the Kremlin-supported government of President Viktor Yanukovych. Following the collapse, 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: February 22, 2016
Creator: Morelli, Vincent L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

State Minimum Wages: An Overview

Description: 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. The report also discusses the interaction of federal and state minimum wages over time.
Date: February 3, 2016
Creator: Bradley, David H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Volkswagen, Defeat Devices, and the Clean Air Act: Frequently Asked Questions

Description: This report provides answers to a series of frequently asked questions focusing on a description of modern diesel technologies, their market and emissions profiles, and some potential reasons that could underlie the use of defeat devices. It summarizes the specific allegations filed against VW under the Clean Air Act, the current status of federal and state investigations, and the potential civil and criminal penalties. Further, the report introduces several outstanding issues currently under debate regarding the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) resources and activities, and issues surrounding VW's defeat device.
Date: February 10, 2016
Creator: Canis, Bill; Lattanzio, Richard K.; Vann, Adam & Yacobucci, Brent D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Marine Corps Amphibious Combat Vehicle (ACV) and Marine Personnel Carrier (MPC): Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report discusses issues surrounding the funding for development of Marine Corps Amphibious Combat Vehicle (ACV) and Marine Personnel Carrier (MPC). The Marines are required by law to have the necessary equipment to conduct amphibious operations and land operations.
Date: February 26, 2016
Creator: Feickert, Andrew
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

"Regulatory Relief" for Banking: Selected Legislation in the 114th Congress

Description: This report discusses regulatory relief legislation for banks in the 114th Congress that has seen floor action or has been ordered to be reported by a committee. Many, but not all, of the bills would make changes to the Dodd-Frank Act (P.L. 111-203), a wide-ranging financial reform enacted in response to the financial crisis.
Date: January 19, 2016
Creator: Hoskins, Sean M.; Gnanarajah, Raj; Labonte, Marc; Murphy, Edward V. & Shorter, Gary
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Continuing Resolutions: Overview of Components and Recent Practices

Description: The purpose of this report is to provide an overview of the components of Continuing Resolutions (CRs) and a longitudinal analysis of recent congressional practices. Consequently, the data and analysis in this report are inclusive of all appropriations acts entitled or otherwise designated as providing continuing appropriations. The first section of this report explains six of the possible main components of CRs: coverage, duration, funding rate, restrictions on new activities, anomalies, and legislative provisions. The second section discusses the enactment of regular appropriations prior to the start of the fiscal year and the number of regular appropriations bills enacted through a CR since FY1977. The third section analyzes variations in the number and duration of CRs enacted each fiscal year since FY1997, the most recent fiscal year that all regular appropriations were enacted on time. Finally, the fourth section of this report discusses the features of the 15 CRs that provided funding through the remainder of the fiscal year since FY1977. A list of all CRs enacted between FY1977 and FY2016 is provided at the end of this report in Table 4.
Date: January 14, 2016
Creator: Saturno, James V. & Tollestrup, Jessica
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Iran Sanctions

Description: This report analyzes U.S. and international sanctions against Iran and provides some examples, based on open sources, of companies and countries that conduct business with Iran.
Date: January 21, 2016
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department