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Federal Individual Income Tax Terms: An Explanation

Description: This report describes the terms most commonly used when discussing the federal individual income tax. Most of these tax terms are explained in the order that they occur in the process of determining one's income tax on the Form 1040. A copy of the 2016 IRS Form 1040 is included at the end of this report.
Date: May 31, 2017
Creator: Keightley, Mark P.

U.S. Beef: It's What's for China

Description: This report discusses the opening of the Chinese market to U.S. beef imports under certain restrictions. The negotiation process and conditions of the agreement and China's current largest beef import partners are also discussed.
Date: June 22, 2017
Creator: Greene, Joel L.

A Primer on U.S. Immigration Policy

Description: This report provides a broad overview of U.S. immigration policy. The first section addresses policies governing how foreign nationals enter the United States either to reside permanently or to stay temporarily. Related topics within this section include visa issuance and security, forms of quasi-legal status, and naturalization. The second section discusses enforcement policies both for excluding foreign nationals from admission into the United States, as well as for detaining and removing those who enter the country unlawfully or who enter lawfully but subsequently commit crimes that make them deportable. The section also covers worksite enforcement and immigration fraud. The third section addresses policies for unauthorized aliens residing in the United States.
Date: November 14, 2017
Creator: Kandel, William A.

Update: What Constitutes "Sexual Abuse of a Minor" For Immigration Purposes

Description: This report provides an update of an earlier report from April 6, 2017, providing the final decision by the Supreme Court in the case of "Esquivel-Quintana v. Sessions". The case concerned the question of whether an immigrant alien who was convicted of sexual abuse of a minor where the minor was under 18 but at least 16 (in this case statutory rape in California between a 21 year old male and a 17 year female) was removable for an aggravated felony under immigration law. The Supreme Court ruled that the immigration law required the victim be under 16 before the removal of an alien for an aggravated felony would be allowable.
Date: June 7, 2017
Creator: Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service.

Trade Promotion Authority (TPA): Frequently Asked Questions

Description: This report answers frequently asked questions regarding the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) program which requires international trade agreements that reduce tariff or non-tariff barriers to trade in ways that require changes in U.S. law, to be implemented only through the enactment of legislation. If the trade agreement and the process of negotiating it meet certain requirements, TPA allows Congress to consider the required implementing bill under expedited procedures, pursuant to which the bill may come to the floor without action by the leadership, and can receive a guaranteed up-or-down vote with no amendments.
Date: November 14, 2017
Creator: Fergusson, Ian F. & Davis, Christopher M.

Nuclear Energy: Overview of Congressional Issues

Description: This report discusses nuclear energy and various issues and concerns related to it use. Congressional actions and related CRS reports are described for six topics which are: radioactive waste, economic viability, safety, technological advances, security and emergency plans, and nuclear weapon nonproliferation.
Date: November 27, 2017
Creator: Holt, Mark

U.S. Direct Investment Abroad: Trends and Current Issues

Description: This report discusses the United States direct investment in other countries through many multinational corporations. Tables showing the rates of investment in various countries by U.S. companies and discussion of the economic effects of the practice on the U.S. job market are included.
Date: June 29, 2017
Creator: Jackson, James K.

Shutdown of the Federal Government: Causes, Processes, and Effects

Description: This report is intended to address questions that arise frequently related to the topic of government shutdowns. It discusses the causes of funding gaps and shutdowns of the federal government, processes that are associated with shutdowns, and how agency operations may be affected by shutdowns. The report concludes with a discussion of potential issues for Congress.
Date: November 30, 2017
Creator: Brass, Clinton T.; Brudnick, Ida A.; Keegan, Natalie; McMillion, Barry J.; Rollins, John W. & Yeh, Brian T.

State Exports to NAFTA Countries for 2016

Description: This report provides statistics on state-level U.S. exports to Canada and Mexico, parties to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), using data from the U.S. Census Bureau tailored for each state.
Date: 2017
Creator: Library of Congress. Congressional Research Service.

Types of Committee Hearings

Description: This report describes the four types of congressional committee hearings; legislative, oversight, investigative, and confirmation and the rules governing them.
Date: June 28, 2017
Creator: Heitshusen, Valerie

Navy Ship Names: Background for Congress

Description: This report discusses the Navy's ship naming practices and the process of choosing new ship names. Methods of Congress expressing support for a name and recent legislation recommending the name "Los Alamos" for the Navy's next nuclear submarine are also included.
Date: October 27, 2017
Creator: O'Rourke, Ronald

The Federal Assets Sale and Transfer Act of 2016: Background and Key Provisions

Description: This report discuses Federal real property holdings and the disposition process for unneeded space. A new law called the Federal Assets Sale and Transfer Act of 2016 (FASTA) now governs the process of disposal through a newly created Public Buildings Reform Board that reviews requests and provides funding for needed repairs before sale or lease of property. Various challenges addressed by the new system and those that remain are discussed.
Date: October 31, 2017
Creator: Hatch, Garrett

Two-Sided Credit Card Markets: The Supreme Court Takes Up Novel Antitrust Issue

Description: This report discusses the case of "Ohio v. American Express" which the Supreme Court has accepted for hearing which poses the question of how federal antitrust law should treat two-sided markets which are platforms in which two distinct user groups operate in an interdependent way. The case challenges anti-steering clauses in American Express contract agreements with merchants that prevent the merchants from promoting the use of other credit cards. The case has the potential to change the way vendors accept card payments across the country--but the case also provides the Supreme Court with the opportunity to guide the lower courts that are increasingly confronting antitrust issues concerning two-sided markets. As a result, the American Express case raises several issues for Congress that could implicate its legislative and oversight roles with respect to the financial services industry and, more generally, the regulation of two-sided markets.
Date: November 13, 2017
Creator: Smith, Austin D.

House Committee Funding: Description of Process and Analysis of Disbursements

Description: This report discusses the funding process of House committees. The report is organized in three sections. The first provides an overview of the committee funding process in the House and analyzes funding levels since 1996. The second reviews House floor and committee action on committee funding in the 115th Congress. The final section summarizes the rules and regulations that structure the use of committee funds, and analyzes actual committee funding spending patterns during six previous years.
Date: May 16, 2017
Creator: Glassman, Matthew Eric

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

Description: This report discusses the Marine Corps development and funding requests for the the 2018 fiscal year for Amphibious Combat Vehicles (ACV) and Marine Personnel Carriers (MPC). The Department of Defense's FY 2018 Budget Request requests $340.5 million dollars for 26 ACVs. Potential issues for Congress include an increase in Marine Corps end strength and force structure resulting in an increase in overall ACV requirements and the challenges and risks associated with the Marines' new MPC/ACV acquisition strategy.
Date: June 1, 2017
Creator: Feickert, Andrew

Payments for Affordable Care Act (ACA) Cost-Sharing Reductions

Description: This report discusses President Trump's announcement that the federal government would stop issuing cost-sharing reductions(CSRs) to insurers under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and potential implications for the insurance market and consumers.
Date: October 25, 2017
Creator: Fernandez, Bernadette

Respirable Crystalline Silica in the Workplace: New Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) Standards

Description: This report discusses the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's (OSHA) newly published new standards regulating exposure to crystalline silica in the workplace. Under the new standards, the Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL) for crystalline silica will be reduced to 50 µg/m3 (micrograms per cubic meter of air). Employers will be required to monitor crystalline silica exposure if workplace levels may exceed 25 µg/m3 for at least 30 days in a year and provide medical monitoring to employees in those workplaces. In the case of construction workers, medical monitoring is required only if the new standards require workers to wear respirators for at least 30 days in a year.
Date: May 31, 2017
Creator: Szymendara, Scott D.

Fiscal Year 2017 Appropriations for the Department of Justice Grant Programs

Description: This report outlines the 2017 fiscal year appropriations for the five Department of Justice (DOJ) grant programs which assist communities with various criminal justice related issues. Congress provided a total of $2.320 billion for DOJ's five grant accounts, an amount that is 6.7% less than the FY2016 appropriation and 1.8% less than the Administration's request. Funding for three of the five grant accounts decreased for FY2017, the exceptions being Violence Against Women Programs (+$2 million) and the Community Oriented Policing Services (+$10 million). However, the increase in funding for the Community Oriented Policing Services account is largely attributable to Congress moving funding for the Regional Information Sharing System from the Research, Evaluation, and Statistics account to the Community Oriented Policing Services account.
Date: May 30, 2017
Creator: James, Nathan

A Second Amendment Right to Sell Firearms? The Ninth Circuit, Sitting En Banc, Weighs In

Description: This report discusses the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit (Ninth Circuit) decision in "Teixeira v. County of Alameda" which reversed the original court decision which held that Second Amendment rights applied to commercial firearm sellers. The course of the case and decision and implications of the ruling are also discussed.
Date: November 2, 2017
Creator: Peck, Sarah Herman

H-2A and H-2B Temporary Worker Visas: Policy and Related Issues

Description: This report covers the H-2A agricultural guest worker program and the H-2B nonagricultural guest worker program. It explores the statutory and regulatory provisions that govern each program, focusing in particular on the much-debated labor certification process. It discusses past and present legislative efforts to reform the H-2A and H-2B programs and to create new guest worker visas, and identifies and analyzes key policy considerations to help inform future congressional action.
Date: May 10, 2017
Creator: Bruno, Andorra

Flood-Risk Reduction and Resilience: Federal Assistance and Programs

Description: This report provides an overview of flood assistance programs and the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) related mitigation incentives; it also raises flood-related policy considerations associated with federal programs and practices.
Date: November 13, 2017
Creator: Carter, Nicole T.; Horne, Diane P.; Brown, Jared T.; Boyd, Eugene; Stubbs, Megan; Ramseur, Jonathan L. et al.