Posts tagged ‘federal’

Organized Retail Crime (ORC): Private Sector and Law Enforcement Collaborate to Deter and Investigate Theft

Organized Retail Crime (ORC): Private Sector and Law Enforcement Collaborate to Deter and Investigate Theft

by Eileen R. Larence
Paperback, 49 pages, 2011, $20.00
ISBN: 9781437987577

Each year organized groups of professional shoplifters steal or fraudulently obtain billions of dollars in merchandise to resell in an activity known as ORC. These stolen goods can also be sold on online marketplaces, a practice known as “e-fencing.” This report assessed ORC and e-fencing.

It addresses: (1) types of efforts that select retailers, state and local law enforcement, and federal agencies are undertaking to combat ORC; (2) the extent to which tools or mechanisms exist to facilitate collaboration and info. sharing among these ORC stakeholders; and (3) steps that online marketplaces have taken to combat ORC and e-fencing, and additional actions retailers and law enforcement think may enhance these efforts. Illus. This is a print on demand report.

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August 2, 2011 at 7:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Costs Associated with First-Time Homelessness for Families and Individuals

Costs Associated with First-Time Homelessness for Families and Individuals
by Brooke Spellman
Paperback, 232 pages, 2010, ISBN: 9781437933890, $20.00

Moving homeless families into permanent housing is significantly cheaper than putting them in emergency shelters, according to a U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development study released yesterday, reports the Philadelphia Inquirer.

This report examines costs associated with the use of homeless and mainstream service delivery systems by families and individuals experiencing homelessness for the first time in six study communities.

Assigning costs to public programs is a first step toward developing measures of the value of public interventions compared to the public costs incurred by ignoring or avoiding the problems those interventions are intended to address.

The study finds that the experience of homelessness is diverse and the associated costs vary tremendously depending on the pattern of homelessness and family or individual status.

It is not, however, a study of either cost-effectiveness or quality of care, but rather a calculation of costs associated with homelessness. Illustrations.

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August 4, 2010 at 12:09 pm Leave a comment

New Government Report: Bank Mergers and Banking Structure in the United States, 1980-98

Bank Mergers and Banking Structure in the United States, 1980-98
by Stephen A. Rhoades
Paperback, 33 pages, 2000, $25.00
ISBN: 9781437933659

After 1980, the U.S. banking industry experienced a sustained and unprecedented level of merger activity that has substantially affected banking structure.

From 1980 through 1998, there were approximately 8,000 mergers, involving about $2.4 trillion in acquired assets. From 1990 to 1999 several mergers occurred that, at the time of occurrence, were the largest bank mergers in U.S. history.

This report describes various facets of bank merger activity and some of the changes in U.S. banking structure that occurred from 1980 through 1998. A primary force underlying the sustained merger movement in banking since 1980 was the gradual removal of state and federal restrictions on geographic expansion in banking. Charts and tables.

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August 4, 2010 at 7:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Commonwealth Brands, Inc. vs. U.S.: Legal Judgment on Marketing Restrictions in the New Federal Tobacco Law

Commonwealth Brands, Inc. vs. U.S.: Legal Judgment on Marketing Restrictions in the New Federal Tobacco Law
by Joseph H. McKinley Jr.
Paperback, 47 pages, 2010, $30.00, ISBN: 9781437936704

The opinion and order of U.S. District Judge Joseph H. McKinley Jr., U.S. District Court, Western District of Kentucky, Bowling Green Division, which overturns two of the marketing restrictions in the new federal tobacco law.

Several tobacco makers sued in August 2009 to block the restrictions. Judge McKinley agreed that the ban on color and graphics in labels and advertising that children might see intruded too broadly on commercial free speech.

He noted that, instead, Congress could have exempted certain types of color and graphic images. Judge McKinley did uphold the authority of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to restrict tobacco marketing, as well as a specific provision which requires new, graphic warning labels to cover the top half of cigarette packages.

In fact, he upheld most of the new marketing restrictions, including a ban on tobacco companies sponsoring athletic, social and cultural events or offering free samples or branded merchandise.

Lawyers on both sides affirmed that this case will probably be appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and eventually to the Supreme Court.

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August 3, 2010 at 11:53 pm Leave a comment

New Government Report: Repairing a Broken System: Protecting Consumers in Debt Collection Litigation and Arbitration (ISBN: 9781437936350)

Repairing a Broken System: Protecting Consumers in Debt Collection Litigation and Arbitration (ISBN: 9781437936350)
By Jon Leibowitz
(Paperback, 106 pages, 2010, $30.00)

Creditors and collectors seek to recover consumer debts through the use of litigation and arbitration. But, neither litigation nor arbitration currently provides adequate protection for consumers. The system for resolving disputes about consumer debts is broken.

To fix the system, federal and state governments, the debt collection industry, and other stakeholders should make a variety of significant reforms in litigation and arbitration so that the system is both efficient and fair.

Contents of this report: Introduction; Litigation and Arbitration Proceedings; Conclusion. Appendices: Debt Collection Roundtable (DCR) Panelists; Contributors to DCR; Agendas for DCR; DCR Public Comments; Sample State Debt Collection Checklists. Illustrations.

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July 23, 2010 at 9:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control Program: Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2009 (ISBN: 9781437935172)

Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control Program: Annual Report for Fiscal Year 2009 (ISBN: 9781437935172)
By Daniel R. Levinson
(Paperback, 69 pages, 2010, $25)

Every year, billions of taxpayer dollars intended to provide health care to Americans are stolen by fraudulent schemes. Combined federal and state spending on Medicaid and Medicare is projected to exceed $800 billion per year in 2010. Estimates project fraud consumes 3 to 10 percent of total spending. That’s $27 billion to $80 billion in 2010 alone, if left unchecked, Virginia’s Daily Press reports.

During Fiscal Year 2009, the Federal Government won or negotiated approximately $1.63 billion in judgments and settlements, and it attained additional administration impositions in health care fraud cases and proceedings. The Medicare Trust Fund received transfers of approximately $2.51 billion during this period as a result of these efforts, as well as those of preceding years, in addition to over $441 million in Federal Medicaid money similarly transferred separately to the Treasury as a result of these efforts. The Health Care Fraud and Abuse Control Program account has returned over $15.6 billion to the Medicare Trust Fund since the inception of the Program in 1997. In Fiscal Year 2009, U.S. Attorneys’ Offices opened 1,014 new criminal health care fraud investigations involving 1,786 defendants. Illustrations.

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July 7, 2010 at 7:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Cybersecurity: Continued Attention is Needed to Protect Federal Information Systems from Evolving Threats: Congressional Testimony (ISBN: 9781437935073)

Cybersecurity: Continued Attention is Needed to Protect Federal Information Systems from Evolving Threats: Congressional Testimony (ISBN: 9781437935073)
By Gregory C. Wilshusen
(Paperback, 15 pages, 2010, $15)

Pervasive and sustained cyber attacks continue to pose a potentially devastating threat to the systems and operations of the federal government. Many nation states, terrorist networks, and organized criminal groups have the capability to target elements of the U.S. information infrastructure for intelligence collection, intellectual property theft, or disruption. The dependence of federal agencies on information systems to carry out essential, everyday operations can make them vulnerable to an array of cyber-based risks.

This statement describes: (1) cyber threats to federal information systems and cyber-based critical infrastructures; (2) control deficiencies that make federal systems vulnerable to those threats; and (3) opportunities that exist for improving federal cybersecurity.

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July 2, 2010 at 9:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Terrorist Attacks on Commercial Airlines: Federal Criminal Prohibitions (ISBN: 1437928471)

Terrorist Attacks on Commercial Airlines: Federal Criminal Prohibitions
(ISBN: 1437928471)

By Charles Doyle (Paperback, 16 pages, 2010, $15)

In December 2009, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a Nigerian man who allegedly ignited an incendiary device on a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit was charged with attempting to destroy the plane, according to NPR.

Federal authorities can prosecute terrorist attacks on commercial airlines under a wide variety of federal statutes. Some of those statutes outlaw crimes committed aboard a commercial airliner; some, crimes committed against the aircraft itself; others, crimes involving the use of firearms or explosives; still others, crimes committed for terrorist purposes. Although most apply when committed within the U.S., many apply to terrorist attacks overseas.

Contents of this report: Introduction; Crimes Aboard an Aircraft; Crimes Against an Aircraft; Crimes Involving Destructive Devices; Other Terrorist Crimes; Crimes Against Protected Individuals; Accomplice Liability; Selected Procedural Aspects; Pertinent Penalties and Territorial Jurisdictional Factors.

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June 14, 2010 at 5:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Oil Spills in U.S. Coastal Waters: Background, Governance, and Issues for Congress (ISBN: 9781437934069)

Oil Spills in U.S. Coastal Waters: Background, Governance, and Issues for Congress (ISBN: 9781437934069)
By Jonathan L. Ramseur (Paperback, 34 pages, 2010, $20)

This past week has seen the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico worsen, despite attempts to plug the gushing oil well. Carol M. Browner, President Obama’s climate change and energy policy adviser, told ABC’s “Good Morning America” that she was concerned about the impact that the hurricane season could have on the continuing environmental crisis.

This report’s contents: (1) Background: Oil Spills (OS) in U.S. Coastal Waters; Impacts of OS in Aquatic Environment: Acute Impacts; Chronic Impacts; Ecosystem Recovery; Economic Costs of OS: Cleanup Costs; Natural Resources Damages; Other Economic Costs; (2) OS Governance: Federal Authorities: Exxon Valdez OS: 1990 Oil Pollution Act; Other Federal Laws; International Conventions: MARPOL 73/78; Intervention Convention; Federal Agencies Responsibilities: Response; Prevention and Preparedness; Federal Funding for the OS Liability Trust Fund: Background; Trust Fund Ceiling; Fund Projections, and Vulnerability; State Laws; (3) Threat of Future OS in U.S. Coastal Waters: Possibilities for Future OS: U.S. Oil Imports and Possible OS; Level of Preparedness. Illustrations.

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June 1, 2010 at 7:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Terrorist Watchlist Screening: FBI Has Enhanced Its Use of Information from Firearm and Explosives Background Checks to Support Counterterrorism Efforts: Congressional Testimony

Terrorist Watchlist Screening: FBI Has Enhanced Its Use of Information from Firearm and Explosives Background Checks to Support Counterterrorism Efforts: Congressional Testimony
By Eileen R. Larence (Paperback, 17 pages, 2010, $15)

Membership in a terrorist organization does not prohibit a person from possessing firearms or explosives under current federal law. However, for homeland security and other purposes, the FBI is notified when a firearm or explosives background check involves an individual on the terrorist watchlist.

In light of the recent failed Times Square bombing, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg told the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee:

“When gun dealers run background checks, should F.B.I. agents have the authority to block sales of guns and explosives to those on the terror watch lists — and deemed too dangerous to fly?” the New York Times reported the Mayor asking. “I believe strongly that they should.”

According to GAO, from February 2004 to February 2010, 1,228 people listed on an FBI terror watchlist had tried to buy weapons. About 90 percent, some 1,119, had succeeded. Faisal Shahzad, the alleged bomber, was not on the list in March.

This statement addresses: (1) how many checks have resulted in matches with the terrorist watchlist; (2) how the FBI uses information from these checks for counterterrorism purposes; and (3) pending legislation that would give the Attorney General authority to deny certain checks. Includes recommendations. Charts and tables.

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May 10, 2010 at 5:00 am Leave a comment

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