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Blockchain: Background and Policy Issues

Description: This report explains the technologies which underpin blockchain digital financial ledgers, how blockchain works, potential applications for blockchain, concerns with it, and potential considerations for Congress.
Date: February 28, 2018
Creator: Jaikaran, Chris
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Education-Related Regulatory Flexibilities, Waivers, and Federal Assistance in Response to Disasters and National Emergencies

Description: This report is intended to inform Congress of existing statutory and regulatory provisions that may aid in responding to future disasters and national emergencies that may affect the provision of or access to education and highlight the actions of previous Congresses to provide additional recovery assistance. This report reflects the most recently available guidance, as of the date of publication, related to education-related disaster response and flexibilities. It will be updated should new or additional statutes be enacted or guidance be issued.
Date: February 28, 2018
Creator: Granovskiy, Boris & Hegji, Alexandra
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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EPA's Proposal to Repeal the Clean Power Plan: Benefits and Costs

Description: This report discusses the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) plan for repealing the Clean Power Plan and the new plans costs and benefits.
Date: February 28, 2018
Creator: Shouse, Kate C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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The Social Security Retirement Age

Description: This report discusses the social security retirement age and the differences in monthly benefits received by individuals taking social security early or after full retirement age (FRA). Increases in the retirement age and various proposals related to changes in the timing of benefits is also discussed.
Date: February 28, 2018
Creator: Nuschler, Dawn
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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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 (Table 1 provides summary data). Next, the report discusses the interaction of federal and state minimum wages over time, and finally, the Appendix provides detailed information on the major components of minimum wage policies in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Date: February 28, 2018
Creator: Bradley, David H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Critical Digital Pedagogy Faculty Mentoring Network: Midterm Report

Description: This report details the mid-term status of the Critical Digital Pedagogy Faculty Mentoring Network project funded through the University of North Texas Office of Faculty Success Team Mentoring Grant.
Date: February 28, 2017
Creator: Keralis, Spencer D. C.
Partner: UNT Libraries
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Federally Funded Academic Research Requirements: Background and Issues in Brief

Description: This report contains background information and selected issues on federal regulations and administrative requirements related to federally-funded academic research, including a general overview and discussion of select issues.
Date: February 28, 2017
Creator: Harris, Laurie A. & Gallo, Marcy E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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An Overview of Recent Tax Reform Proposals

Description: This report provides a review of legislative tax reform proposals introduced since the 113th Congress. Several proposals have already been introduced in the 115th Congress to replace the current income tax system.
Date: February 28, 2017
Creator: Keightley, Mark P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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The United Arab Emirates (UAE): Issues for U.S. Policy

Description: This report discusses the current political and economic landscape of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and its relationship with the U.S. The UAE has been a significant U.S. partner in Gulf security for more than two decades, and the alliance has deepened further in recent years in order to address multiple regional threats.
Date: February 28, 2017
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Army Workload and Performance System: Actions Needed to Complete Assessment of Unnecessary Overlap with Logistics Modernization Program

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The Army has not followed certain applicable statutory and regulatory requirements for implementing the Army Workload and Performance System (AWPS). The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2002 requires the Secretary of the Army to submit annual progress reports to Congress on the implementation of the AWPS master plan until the Secretary certifies to Congress that AWPS is fully implemented. Although the Secretary has not yet made this certification, the Army has not been submitting progress reports. According to Army officials, the Army does not plan to submit progress reports until a revised master plan for AWPS is completed. However, for many years the Army has been unable to complete an update to the master plan due to a lack of oversight. Additionally, the Army has not validated AWPS as a manpower requirements determination tool. Army regulation states that the U.S. Army Manpower and Analysis Agency (USAMAA) is responsible for reviewing and validating manpower requirements models like AWPS and that major commands—such as the Army Materiel Command (AMC)—are responsible for submitting their models to USAMAA for validation. AMC directs the activities of Army industrial sites and is the primary user of AWPS. USAMAA and AMC officials have discussed the need for AWPS to be validated, but AWPS has not yet been submitted to USAMAA for validation. USAMAA officials initially contacted AMC regarding submitting AWPS for validation; however, at the time, AMC was not prepared to proceed. Later, when ready to seek validation, AWPS officials told GAO they asked for assistance from USAMAA, but additional assistance had not yet been provided. Because USAMAA officials involved in these earlier contacts subsequently left USAMAA, GAO was unable to corroborate that USAMAA did not respond to AWPS officials' request …
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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The Army's Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV) Program: Background and Issues for Congress

Description: This report looks at the history and current need for a Ground Combat Vehicle (GCV) program. Potential issues for Congress include the role of the GCV and the need for the program in a downsized Army that will likely have fewer heavy brigade combat teams (HBCTs).
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: Feickert, Andrew
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Aviation Workforce: Current and Future Availability of Airline Pilots

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "GAO found mixed evidence regarding the extent of a shortage of airline pilots, although regional airlines have reported difficulties finding sufficient numbers of qualified pilots over the past year. Specifically, looking at broad economic indicators, airline pilots have experienced a low unemployment rate—the most direct measure of a labor shortage; however, both employment and earnings have decreased since 2000, suggesting that demand for these occupations has not outstripped supply. Looking forward, industry forecasts and the Bureau of Labor Statistics' employment projections suggest the need for pilots to be between roughly 1,900 and 4,500 pilots per year, on average, over the next decade, which is consistent with airlines' reported expectations for hiring over this period. Yet studies GAO reviewed examining whether the future supply of pilots will be sufficient to meet this need had varying conclusions. Two studies point to the large number of qualified pilots that exists, but who may be working abroad, in the military, or in another occupation, as evidence that there is adequate supply. However, whether these pilots choose to seek employment with U.S. airlines depends on the extent to which pilot job opportunities arise, and on the wages and benefits airlines offer. Another study concludes that future supply will be insufficient, absent any actions taken, largely resulting from accelerating costs of pilot education and training. Such costs deter individuals from pursuing a pilot career. Pilot schools that GAO interviewed reported fewer students entering their programs resulting from concerns over the high costs of education and low entry-level pay at regional airlines. As airlines have recently started hiring, nearly all of the regional airlines that GAO interviewed reported difficulties finding sufficient numbers of qualified entry-level first officers. However, mainline airlines, because they hire …
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Aviation Workforce: Current and Future Availability of Aviation Engineering and Maintenance Professionals

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "GAO analysis found mixed evidence about a current or possible future shortage of aviation professionals. Aerospace engineers have experienced a low unemployment rate—the most direct measure of a labor shortage—and increases in employment suggesting a shortage may exist; however, earnings for the occupation have stayed about the same. Data provide less support for a shortage of aircraft mechanics; while the occupation has had a low unemployment rate, both employment and earnings have stayed about the same, suggesting that demand for this occupation has not outstripped supply. GAO was unable to analyze information on avionics technicians because of insufficient data. In addition, the Bureau of Labor Statistics' employment projections indicate slower than average or no growth for these three occupations over the next 10 years. Data also suggest the number of people who have received training related to these aviation professions is increasing; however, several other industries compete for these individuals and not all will pursue aviation careers."
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Cast Stone Formulation At Higher Sodium Concentrations

Description: A low temperature waste form known as Cast Stone is being considered to provide supplemental Low Activity Waste (LAW) immobilization capacity for the Hanford site. Formulation of Cast Stone at high sodium concentrations is of interest since a significant reduction in the necessary volume of Cast Stone and subsequent disposal costs could be achieved if an acceptable waste form can be produced with a high sodium molarity salt solution combined with a high water to premix (or dry blend) ratio. The objectives of this study were to evaluate the factors involved with increasing the sodium concentration in Cast Stone, including production and performance properties and the retention and release of specific components of interest. Three factors were identified for the experimental matrix: the concentration of sodium in the simulated salt solution, the water to premix ratio, and the blast furnace slag portion of the premix. The salt solution simulants used in this study were formulated to represent the overall average waste composition. The cement, blast furnace slag, and fly ash were sourced from a supplier in the Hanford area in order to be representative. The test mixes were prepared in the laboratory and fresh properties were measured. Fresh density increased with increasing sodium molarity and with decreasing water to premix ratio, as expected given the individual densities of these components. Rheology measurements showed that all of the test mixes produced very fluid slurries. The fresh density and rheology data are of potential value in designing a future Cast Stone production facility. Standing water and density gradient testing showed that settling is not of particular concern for the high sodium compositions studied. Heat of hydration measurements may provide some insight into the reactions that occur within the test mixes, which may in turn be related to the properties and performance of …
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: Fox, K. M.; Roberts, K. A. & Edwards, T. B.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Center for Momentum Transport and Flow Organization in Plasmas and Magnetofluids (CMTFO)

Description: The CMTFO funding partially supports a junior researcher and a graduate student at UCI. During this project, we have further developed the global gyrokinetic particle code GTC to study the momentum transport in tokamak driven by electrostatic ion temperature gradient (ITG) turbulence [1] with kinetic electrons and by collisionless trapped electron mode (CTEM) turbulence [2]. We have also upgraded GTC for fully electromagnetic simulation and for linear plasma configuration with verification and validation of the electron temperature gradient (ETG) turbulence in Columbia Linear Machine. The followings are the highlights on the physics results reported in the key publications of this project.
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: Lin, Zhihong
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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General Services Administration: GSA Should Clarify Its Reporting Exemption and Collect Additional Data on Executives' Use of Aircraft for Nonmission Purposes

Description: A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The exemption in General Services Administration (GSA) regulations that allows intelligence agencies not to report unclassified data on senior federal official travel for nonmission purposes is not consistent with executive branch requirements, and GSA has not provided a basis for deviating from these requirements. Specifically, executive branch documents—including Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-126, OMB Bulletin 93-11, and a 1993 presidential memorandum to the heads of all executive departments and agencies—require agencies to report to GSA, and for GSA to collect data, on senior federal official travel on government aircraft for nonmission purposes, except for trips that are classified. As a result, GSA is not collecting all specified unclassified data as directed, and GSA has not provided a basis for deviating from executive branch requirements. Identifying an adequate basis for the intelligence agency reporting exemption or removing the exemption from its regulations if a basis cannot be identified could help GSA ensure its regulations for senior federal official travel comply with executive branch requirements."
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Multi-Hybrid Power Vehicles with Cost Effective and Durable Polymer Electrolyte

Description: Anima Bose, the principal investigator of the project, originally proposed to develop composite membranes to operate PEMFCs at much higher temperatures than 80{degrees}C and to alleviate the flooding problems often encountered in Nafion menmbrane containing fuel cells. The PI has successfully created composite membranes by blending small quantities of octasilane-poss (OSP) with Nafion. The composite membranes exhibited temperature tolerance up to 110{degrees}C without scarifying cell performance as determined by polarization curves and proton conductivity measurements. These membranes also exhibited superior water management performance as evident from the lack of flooding. Furthermore, these fuel cells performed well under reduced humidities. Structural and thermal analyses revealed that these Nafion-octasilane composite membranes are homogenous at concentrations up to 3 wt% of the OSP and that the siloxane offers additional thermal stability.
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: Bose, Anima
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Prevalence of Mental Illness in the United States: Data Sources and Estimates

Description: This report briefly describes the methodology and results of three large surveys (funded in whole or in part by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services) that provide national prevalence estimates of diagnosable mental illness: the National Comorbidity Survey Replication (NCS-R), the National Comorbidity Survey Replication Adolescent Supplement (NCS-A), and the National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). The report then presents prevalence estimates of any mental illness and serious mental illness based on each survey and ends with a brief discussion of how these prevalence estimates might inform policy discussions
Date: February 28, 2014
Creator: Bagalman, Erin & Napili, Angela
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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