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Chemical Plant Security

Description: Facilities handling large amounts of potentially hazardous chemicals (i.e., chemical facilities) might be of interest to terrorists, either as targets for direct attacks meant to release chemicals into the community or as a source of chemicals for use elsewhere. Because few terrorist attacks have been attempted against chemical facilities in the United States, the risk of death and injury in the near future is estimated to be low, relative to the likelihood of accidents at such facilities or attacks on other targets using conventional weapons. For any individual facility, the risk is very small, but risks may be increasing with potentially severe consequences for human health and the environment. Available evidence indicates that many chemical facilities may lack adequate safeguards.
Date: January 20, 2004
Creator: Schierow, Linda-Jo
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Freedom of Speech and Press: Exceptions to the First Amendment

Description: The First Amendment to the United States Constitution provides that “Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press. . . .” This language restricts government both more and less than it would if it were applied literally. It restricts government more in that it applies not only to Congress, but to all branches of the federal government, and to all branches of state and local government. It restricts government less in that it provides no protection to some types of speech and only limited protection to others. This report provides an overview of the major exceptions to the First Amendment — of the ways that the Supreme Court has interpreted the guarantee of freedom of speech and press to provide no protection or only limited protection for some types of speech.
Date: January 7, 2004
Creator: Cohen, Henry
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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The Hatch-Waxman Act: Proposed Legislative Changes Affecting Pharmaceutical Patents

Description: This record provides information about The Hatch-Waxman Act: Proposed Legislative Changes Affecting Pharmaceutical Patents. Congressional interests in the cost of Pharmaceuticals have focused attention on several areas where the federal government has policies and programs.
Date: January 5, 2004
Creator: Schacht, Wendy H. & Thomas, John R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Comparisons of U.S. and Foreign Military Spending: Data from Selected Public Sources

Description: This report lists and compares military expenditures of the United States and foreign nations using two sources: the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies’ (IISS) The Military Balance, and the U.S. State Department’s World Military Expenditures and Arms Transfers (WMEAT). Although the IISS and the U.S. State Department aim to provide figures that are as consistent and accurate as possible, cross-national comparisons of defense spending are inherently imperfect. Available sets of figures are useful, but often do not correspond with one another for a variety of reasons. This report provides two sets of figures from widely recognized sources in order to offer Congress a sample of the data published on this topic.
Date: January 28, 2004
Creator: Chamberlin, Jeffrey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Campaign Finance: Constitutional and Legal Issues of Soft Money

Description: Prior to enactment of the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (BCRA), P.L. 107-155, the term “soft money” generally referred to unregulated funds, perceived as resulting from loopholes in the Federal Election Campaign Act (FECA), 2 U.S.C. §§ 431 et seq. Generally, the intent of BCRA, (effective Nov. 6, 2002), which amends FECA, is to restrict the raising and spending of soft money. This Issue Brief discusses constitutional and legal issues surrounding two major types of soft money that BCRA regulates: political party soft money and soft money used for issue advocacy communications. Corporate and labor union soft money, which FECA exempts from regulation and is not addressed by BCRA, is also discussed.
Date: January 22, 2004
Creator: Whitaker, L. Paige
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002: Summary and Comparison with Previous Law

Description: The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 was enacted on March 27, 2002 as P.L. 107-155. It passed the House on February 14, 2002, as H.R. 2356 (Shays- Meehan), by a 240-189 vote. Its companion measure, on which it was largely based, had initially been passed by the Senate in 2001 as S. 27 (McCain-Feingold). On March 20, 2002, however, the Senate approved the House-passed H.R. 2356 by a 60- 40 vote, thus avoiding a conference to reconcile differences between S. 27 and H.R. 2356. The two primary features of P.L. 107-155 are restrictions on party soft money and issue advocacy.
Date: January 9, 2004
Creator: Cantor, Joseph E. & Whitaker, L. Paige
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Elections Reform: Overview and Issues

Description: This report discusses several issues as the Congress considers legislation to reform the voting process, a number of issues have emerged as part of the debate: the reliability of different types of voting technologies; voting problems and irregularities in the 2000 election; problems for militaryand overseas voters; the electoral college; and early media projections of election results. Both sessions of the 107th Congress considered and debated federal election reform legislation, and the Help America Vote Act (HAVA, P.L. 107-252) was enacted in October 2002.
Date: January 21, 2004
Creator: Coleman, Kevin J. & Fischer, Eric A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Bankruptcy Reform in the 108th Congress

Description: On March 19, 2003, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 975, the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2003. H.R. 975, as introduced, was substantially similar to the legislation (H.R. 333) approved by both the House and the Senate during the 107th Congress, but omitted the Schumer Amendment which would have prevented the discharge of liability for willful violation of protective orders and violent protests against providers of “lawful services,” including reproductive health services. As passed by the House, H.R. 975 was amended to add sections to, among other things, increase the cap on wage and employee benefit claims. The Senate did not consider H.R. 975 during the first session of the 108th Congress. This report provides an overview of selected major provisions of the legislation.
Date: January 29, 2004
Creator: Welborn, Angie A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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COLAs for Military Retirees: Summary of Congressional and Executive Branch Action, 1982-2003 (FY1983-FY2004)

Description: The Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 1982 (which applied to FY1983 budget issues) suspended previously existing permanent law pertaining to cost-of-living adjustments(COLAs) for federal civilian and military retirees, and changed the COLA calculation formulas to postpone and/or reduce future COLAs for military retirees during 1983-1985 (FY1984-FY1986).This report examines executive and congressional COLA-related initiatives associated with each of the fiscal year budgeting processes from calendar year 1982 (FY1983) through calendar year 2000 (FY2001).
Date: January 2, 2004
Creator: Goldich, Robert L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Iraq: U.S. Regime Change Efforts and Post-Saddam Governance

Description: Operation Iraqi Freedom accomplished a long-standing objective, the overthrow and capture of Saddam Hussein, but replacing that regime with a stable, moderate, democratic political structure has run into difficulty. Past U.S. efforts to change the regime failed because of limited U.S. commitment, disorganization of the Iraqi opposition, and the efficiency and ruthlessness of Iraq’s several overlapping security services. Previous U.S. Administrations had ruled out major U.S. military action to change Iraq’s regime, believing such action would be risky and not necessarily justified by the level of Iraq’s lack of compliance on WMD disarmament.
Date: January 7, 2004
Creator: Katzman, Kenneth
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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"Junk E-mail": An Overview of Issues and Legislation Concerning Unsolicited Commercial Electronic Mail ("Spam")

Description: Unsolicited commercial e-mail (UCE), also called “spam” or “junk e-mail,” aggravates many computer users. Not only can spam be a nuisance, but its cost may be passed on to consumers through higher charges from Internet service providers who must upgrade their systems to handle the traffic. Also, some spam involves fraud, or includes adult-oriented material that offends recipients or that parents want to protect their children from seeing. Proponents of UCE insist it is a legitimate marketing technique that is protected by the First Amendment. On December 16, President Bush signed into law S. 877, the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing (CAN-SPAM) Act. The law, P.L. 108-187, went into effect on January 1, 2004.
Date: January 30, 2004
Creator: Smith, Marcia S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Arming Pilots Against Terrorism: Implementation Issues for the Federal Flight Deck Officer Program

Description: The report discusses the issues regarding the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (P.L. 107-296, 116 Stat. 2135), which contains provisions to arm pilots of passenger aircraft and gives deputized pilots the authority to use force, including lethal force, to defend the flight deck against criminal and terrorist threats. The report includes the legislative Background, implementation issues, equipment, training, operational procedures and costs.
Date: January 9, 2004
Creator: Elias, Bartholomew
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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Border Security and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Description: The use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) to improve border security is a technique that has garnered congressional attention. This report examines the strengths and limitations of deploying UAVs along the borders and related issues for Congress. This report is not intended to provide in-depth information regarding technical or military capabilities of UAVs, but to discuss their application at the border.
Date: January 2, 2004
Creator: Blazakis, Jason
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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