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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

Federal Assistance for Victims of Terrorism or Mass Violence: In Brief

Description: This report focuses solely on assistance available from Department of Justice's (DOJ's) Office for Victims of Crime (OVC)--the primary federal assistance available to victims of terrorism or mass violence. Jurisdictions and individuals may be eligible to receive various types of victim assistance both directly from the Department of Justice (DOJ) and indirectly from DOJ through their respective state victim assistance agencies or other programs following incidents of terrorism or mass violence in the United States.
Date: August 3, 2016
Creator: Sacco, Lisa N.
Item Type: Report

Encryption: Frequently Asked Questions

Description: This report discusses encryption, which is a process to secure information from unwanted access or use. Encryption uses the art of cryptography to change information which can be read (plaintext) and make it so that it cannot be read (ciphertext).
Date: unknown
Creator: Jaikaran, Chris
Item Type: Report

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

Private Flood Insurance in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP)

Description: This report briefly discusses federal law regarding flood insurance. By law or regulation, federal agencies, federally-regulated lending institutions, and government-sponsored enterprises must require certain property owners to purchase flood insurance as a condition of any mortgage that these entities make, guarantee, or purchase.
Date: October 12, 2016
Creator: Webel, Baird & Horn, Diane P.
Item Type: Report

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

FY2017 Defense Spending Under an Interim Continuing Resolution (CR): In Brief

Description: This report provides a basic discussion of interim "continuing resolutions" (CRs) and highlights some specific issues for the Department of Defense (DOD) under a CR. It also provides a brief look at selected FY2017 defense programs that could be affected by a CR.
Date: November 7, 2016
Creator: Williams, Lynn M. & Wees, Darren P.
Item Type: Report

Evolution of the Meaning of "Waters of the United States" in the Clean Water Act

Description: This report outlines how the Bipartisan Congressional Trade Priorities and Accountability Act of 2015 (BCTPAA) regulates the eligibility of covered trade agreements for expedited consideration, describes the operation of the statutory expedited procedures for considering implementing bills, and discusses how Congress may use the procedural mechanisms established by the act, as well as other pertinent rules of each chamber, to retain a substantial measure of control over legislation to implement covered trade agreements.
Date: August 12, 2016
Creator: Beth, Richard S.
Item Type: Report

Energy Policy: 114th Congress Issues

Description: This report begins by providing background on the economic rationale for energy market interventions; it highlights various market failures production and consumption of energy, and discusses possible interventions. The report concludes with an analysis of the current status of energy tax policy.
Date: September 30, 2016
Creator: Yacobucci, Brent D.
Item Type: Report

A New Aid Package for Israel

Description: This report discusses potential legislation that could impact the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on U.S. assistance to Israel as the countries continue to negotiate terms for the period FY2019-FY2028.
Date: August 4, 2016
Creator: Sharp, Jeremy M.
Item Type: Report

Acquisition Reform in the House and Senate Versions of the FY2017 National Defense Authorization Act

Description: This report focuses on the sections of the House and Senate versions of the Fiscal Year 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 4909 and S. 2943, respectively) that appear closely linked to the respective armed services committees' stated efforts to reform the acquisition system. For purposes of this analysis, CRS selected 31 sections of the House bill and 67 sections of the Senate bill.
Date: July 13, 2016
Creator: Schwartz, Moshe
Item Type: Report

Military Retirement: Background and Recent Developments

Description: This report discusses the military retirement system. The system currently includes monthly compensation for qualified active and reserve retirees, disability benefits for those deemed medically unfit to serve, and a survivor annuity program for the eligible survivors of deceased retirees.
Date: September 12, 2016
Creator: Kamarck, Kristy N.
Item Type: Report

2016 Rio Games: Anti-Doping Testing

Description: This report discusses the the anti-doping testing program during the 2016 Summer Olympics. Responsibility for the rests with the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The testing period began July 24, 2016, when the Olympic village opened, and continues through August 21, 2016, the date of the closing ceremony.
Date: August 3, 2016
Creator: Halchin, L. E.
Item Type: Report

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: September 8, 2016
Creator: Dilger, Robert J. & Beth, Richard S.
Item Type: Report

Immigration Legislation and Issues in the 114th Congress

Description: This report discusses border security, interior enforcement, visa security, asylum, and other immigration-related issues that have received legislative action or are of significant congressional interest in the 114th Congress.
Date: September 9, 2016
Creator: Bruno, Andorra; Argueta, Carla N.; Bjelopera, Jerome P.; Garcia, Michael John; Kandel, William A. & Siskin, Alison
Item Type: Report

Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV): Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report discusses the Joint Light Tactical Vehicle (JLTV), which is an Army-led, multi-service initiative to develop a family of light tactical vehicles as a successor to the High Mobility, Multi-Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWVs). It includes background information; a description of the JLTV program, program history, and program activities; information about the JLTV contract, Lockheed Martin's protest to the program, budgetary issues, and potential issues for Congress.
Date: September 9, 2016
Creator: Feickert, Andrew
Item Type: Report

Clean Power Plan: Legal Background and Pending Litigation in West Virginia v. EPA

Description: This report provides legal background on the Clean Power Plan rule (CPP or Rule) to regulate emissions of greenhouse gases (GHGs), its Clean Air Act (CAA) framework under Section 111, and climate-related lawsuits that have preceded the present litigation over the CPP. It then gives an overview of the participants in the current litigation, including two groups of Members of Congress, who have offered briefs in support of the petitioners and the respondents, respectively.
Date: August 8, 2016
Creator: Wyatt, Alexandra M.
Item Type: Report

The Terrorist Screening Database and Preventing Terrorist Travel

Description: This report briefly discusses how the U.S. government fashions and uses the Terrorist Screening Database (TSDB). It also discusses how the federal government engages in two travel-related screening processes--visa screening and air passenger screening. Both processes involve subsets of the Terrorist Screening Database.
Date: November 7, 2016
Creator: Bjelopera, Jerome P.; Elias, Bart & Siskin, Alison
Item Type: Report

How a National Infrastructure Bank Might Work

Description: This report discusses the national infrastructure and ways to provide low-cost, long-term loans for the propose of increasing federal infrastructure investment.
Date: September 15, 2016
Creator: Mallett, William J.
Item Type: Report