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Agricultural Marketing and Regulatory Provisions of the 1996 Farm Bill

Description: The Federal Agricultural Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-127), signed into law on April 4, for the first time grants the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) broad-based authority to establish national generic promotion ("check-off") programs for virtually any agricultural commodity. Formerly, individual programs first had to be authorized expressly by Congress. The new law also explicitly authorizes the establishment of new check-off programs for rapeseed and canola, kiwifruit, and popcorn. Other provisions require USDA to establish a new meat and poultry inspection advisory committee; deal with the collection of user fees for the inspection of agricultural imports; and authorize new guidelines to protect horses being transported to slaughter facilities, among other things.
Date: April 30, 1996
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S.
open access

Survey of Grazing Programs in Western States

Description: This report sets out in chart form a survey of grazing programs on state-owned lands in 16 western states. It presents information on acreage, numbers of permits or leases, and fees for state grazing programs. It also contains information on state policies relating to various features such as non-use, range improvements, and subleasing. The Report is based on telephone interviews with state grazing program officials.
Date: January 30, 1996
Creator: Baldwin, Pamela & Cody, Betsy A.
open access

The 1995 Farm Bill: Research, Education, and Extension Issues

Description: The House Agriculture Committee has proposed extending Title XVI of the 1990 farm act (P.L. 101-624) for two years. Currently, the title will expire at the end of 1995. The title includes funding authority for the U.s. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) in-house research programs, as well as federal support for cooperative research, higher education, extension programs in the States, and several research grant programs. This report discusses efforts underway to extend this title and reform future legislation. It also outlines federal spending in these areas.
Date: November 30, 1996
Creator: Rawson, Jean M.
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Dairy Policy Issues

Description: Many dairy farmer groups are concerned that imports of milk protein concentrates (MPCs) are displacing domestic dairy ingredients and thus depressing farm milk prices. S.560 and H.R. 1160 would impose tariff rate quotas on certain MPCs, and S. 40 would prohibit the use of dry MPC in domestic cheese production. Dairy processor groups are opposed to these bills. A dairy producer group challenged the Customs Service classification of MPCs, but Customs ruled that current classifications are correct.
Date: July 30, 2003
Creator: Chite, Ralph M.
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Air Quality and the New Ozone NAAQS: The OTAG Process

Description: The Ozone Transport Assessment Group (OTAG) represented a cooperative effort between states, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and numerous stakeholders to address teh complex issue of ozone transport. However, opponents of the new ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) argue that the OTAG recommendations are far too vague and ambiguous to be cited by EPA as a basis for implementation. This report provides background on the effort, and summarizes OTAG's assessment and recommendations.
Date: July 30, 1998
Creator: Parker, Larry & Blodgett, John E.
open access

Global Climate Change

Description: This report briefly reviews the status of climate science, international negotiations, and congressional activity focused specifically on climate change.
Date: January 30, 2002
Creator: Justus, John R. & Fletcher, Susan R.
open access

Mexican Spotted Owls: Federal Protection

Description: Mexican spotted owls (MSOs) have the largest geographic distribution of the three spotted owl subspecies, with most occurring on National Forest lands in Arizona and New Mexico. Habitat loss and modification due to logging and fire prompted the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) to list MSOs as a threatened species in March 1993. As required in Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the U.S. Forest Service (FS) is consulting with the FWS on 125 timber sales proposed for the region. These consultations are to be completed in October 1993 and a critical habitat designation for the species is expected by November 1992
Date: June 30, 1993
Creator: Heck, Jennifer A.
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Brief Summaries of Federal Animal Protection Statutes

Description: This report contains brief summaries of federal animal protection statutes, listed alphabetically. It does not include treaties, although it does include statutes enacted to implement treaties. It includes statutes concerning animals that are not entirely, or not at all, animal protection statutes. For example, it includes a statute authorizing the eradication of predators, because one of the statute's purposes is to protect domestic and "game, animals; and it includes statutes to conserve fish, although their ultimate purpose may not be for the fishes' benefit. It also includes statutes that allow the disabled to use service animals, and even includes statutes aimed at acts of animal rights advocates (the Animal Enterprise Protection Act of 1992, and the Recreational Hunting Safety and Preservation Act of 1994).
Date: November 30, 1998
Creator: Cohen, Henry
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The Endangered Species Act (ESA), Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA), and Department of Defense (DOD) Readiness Activities: Current Law and Legislative Proposals

Description: This report provides a brief overview of how the Endangered Species Act (ESA)1 and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA)2 and their relevant regulations may apply to military training and readiness activities of the Department of Defense (DOD). Military activities may “take” protected creatures directly (e.g,. killing with ordnance during rifle, gunnery or assault drills), or might destroy habitat (e.g., artillery or bombing practices), even if these results are not the purpose of the activities. The applicability of the MBTA and ESA to military readiness activities has been controversial recently and legislation has been enacted in both the 107th and 108th Congresses on these topics.
Date: May 30, 2003
Creator: Baldwin, Pamela
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The Environmental Protection Agency's FY2003 Budget

Description: On April 9, 2001, the President requested $7.3 billion in discretionary budget authority for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for FY2002, $512.0 million (or 7%) less than the FY2001 funding level of $7.8 billion. The request would not have continued funding of about $500 million for activities earmarked for FY2001, and contained provisions shifting more enforcement responsibilities to the states. Popular wastewater infrastructure funding, state roles, and the future of Superfund were some of the predominant topics. On July 17, the House Appropriations Committee recommended $7.545 billion,$229 million more than requested (H.R. 2620, H. Rept. 107-159).
Date: January 30, 2003
Creator: Lee, Martin R.
open access

The Economics of the Federal Budget Surplus

Description: Fiscal 1998 marked the first year that total receipts exceeded outlays in the federal budget since 1969. Since then, the budget has been in surplus and official projections expect the budget to remain in surplus for the foreseeable future. Congressional Budget Office (CBO) baseline projections indicate that the budget surpluses are expected to grow steadily over the next 10 years.
Date: March 30, 2001
Creator: Cashell, Brian W.
open access

Detention of American Citizens as Enemy Combatants

Description: This report provides background information regarding the cases of two U.S. citizens deemed “enemy combatants,” Yaser Esam Hamdi, who has been returned to Saudi Arabia, and Jose Padilla, who remains in military custody. The report addresses the constitutional and statutory sources that arguably provide authority for the detention of enemy combatants, as well as those that may prevent the exercise of that power with respect to U.S. citizens. The report concludes that historically, even during declared wars, additional statutory authority has been seen as necessary to validate the detention of citizens not members of any armed forces, casting in some doubt the argument that the power to detain is necessarily implied by an authorization to use force. Finally, the report briefly analyzes the Detention of Enemy Combatants Act, H.R. 1029, which would authorize the President to detain U.S. citizens and residents who are determined to be “enemy combatants” in certain circumstances.
Date: January 30, 2003
Creator: Elsea, Jennifer K.
open access

Congress' Early Organization Meetings

Description: The purposes of these meetings are both educational and organizational. Educational sessions range from legislative procedures and staff hiring to current issues. Organizational sessions elect class officers, party leaders, and chamber officers; name committee representatives and other party officials; and select committee chairmen and often committee members. Such actions are officially ratified at the start of the new Congress.
Date: July 30, 1996
Creator: Schneider, Judy
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