Posts tagged ‘united states’

New Government Report: Field Guide for the Identification of Invasive Plants in Southern Forests

Field Guide for the Identification of Invasive Plants in Southern Forests

by James H. Miller
Paperback, 126 pages, 2011, $35.00
ISBN: 1437987451

Invasions of non-native plants into forests of the Southern United States continue to go unchecked and only partially un-monitored. These infestations increasingly erode forest productivity, hindering forest use and management activities, and degrading diversity and wildlife habitat. Often called non-native, exotic, non-indigenous, alien, or noxious weeds, they occur as trees, shrubs, vines, grasses, ferns, and forbs. This guide provides information on accurate identification of the 56 non-native plants and groups that are currently invading the forests of the 13 Southern States. In addition, it lists other non-native plants of growing concern. Illustrations. This is a print on demand edition of an important, hard-to-find publication.

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June 20, 2011 at 10:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Saudi Arabia: Background and U.S. Relations

Saudi Arabia: Background and U.S. Relations
by Christopher M. Blanchard
Paperback, 51 pages, 2009, $30.00
ISBN: 1437928382

Contents: (I) Recent Developments; (II) Background: Saudi Arabia’s Political Development; Saudi-U.S. Relations, 1931-2001; September 11, 2001, and its Aftermath; The 9/11 Commission Report; Saudi Responses; Recent Assessments; Terrorist Financing Concerns; Toward a New Relationship?; New Bilateral Agreements;

(III) Recent Congressional Interest in Saudi Arabia: U.S. Foreign Assistance to Saudi Arabia and Congressional Prohibitions; International Military Education and Training (IMET); Counterterrorism Assistance; Prohibitions on Foreign Assistance; FY2010 Appropriations Debate; U.S. Arms Sales to Saudi Arabia; Background; Criticism and Action in the 110th Congress; BAE Corruption Inquiry;

(IV) Current Issues in U.S.-Saudi Relations; U.S.-Saudi Military Cooperation: U.S. Military Training Mission in Saudi Arabia (USMTM); Saudi Arabian National Guard Modernization Program (PM-SANG); Office of Program Mgt. Ministry of Interior – Facilities Security Forces (OPM MOI-FSF); Counterterrorism; Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula; Combating Extremism; The Arab-Israeli Conflict; Saudi-Palestinian Relations; Saudi Peace Proposals; Iraq;Saudi Policy Priorities in Iraq; Saudi-Iraqi Diplomatic and Economic Relations; Economic Relations and Trade; U.S.-Saudi Trade; U.S. Oil Imports and Saudi Policy; U.S.-Saudi Foreign Direct Investment; Saudi Boycott of Israel and WTO Membership; Human Rights, Religious Freedom, and Political Reform; Political Reform Debates and Elections; Leadership and Succession; Social Reform Debates and Recent Leadership Changes; Human Rights; Religious Freedom; Consular Issues;

(V) Further Reading and Historical Resources; Appendix A. Recent Proposed Arms Sales; Appendix B. Text of Saudi Peace Initiatives. Figures.

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August 11, 2010 at 7:00 am Leave a comment

New Government Report: Factors Affecting the Decisions of General Motors and Chrysler to Reduce Their Dealership Networks

Factors Affecting the Decisions of General Motors and Chrysler to Reduce Their Dealership Networks
by Neil Barofsky
Paperback, 40 pages, 2010, $20.00
ISBN: 9781437936704

For the U.S. auto industry, the quarter ending June 30, 2009, was dominated by the bankruptcy filings of Chrysler and GM. As part of the bankruptcy proceedings, Chrysler terminated 789 dealerships, and GM planned to wind down 1,454 dealerships by Oct. 2010.

Questions arose as to how GM and Chrysler selected dealerships for termination and what benefit, if any, the companies gained from terminating the dealership.

This report addresses: (1) the role of U.S. Treasury in the decision to reduce dealership networks; (2) the extent to which GM and Chrysler documented processes for deciding which dealerships to terminate and which to retain; and (3) to what extent the dealership reductions are expected to lead to cost savings for GM and Chrysler. Illus.

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August 6, 2010 at 9:00 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: Social Security Disability: Management of Disability Claims Workload Will Require comprehensive Planning: Testimony Before Subcommittees on Social Security and Income Security and Family Support, Committee on Ways and Means, U.S. House of Representatives

Social Security Disability: Management of Disability Claims Workload Will Require comprehensive Planning: Testimony Before Subcommittees on Social Security and Income Security and Family Support, Committee on Ways and Means, U.S. House of Representatives
by Daniel Bertoni
Paperback, 17 pages, 2010, ISBN: 9781437933284, $15.00

Statement of Daniel Bertoni, Dir., Education, Workforce, and Income Security, GAO.

Nearly 2 million people are waiting to find out if they qualify for Social Security disability benefits, reports the Associated Press. It will be a long wait for most, even if they eventually win their cases. The Social Security system is so overwhelmed by applications for disability benefits that many people are waiting more than two years for their first payment. In Ohio, Michigan, Minnesota and other states, the wait can be even longer.

For years, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has been challenged to manage its large disability claims workload. Difficulties in making timely and accurate decisions have contributed to backlogs accumulating at different levels of the claims process.

These backlogs have occurred most often at the hearings level, the level at which initial claims that were denied are appealed and await a hearing before an administrative law judge.

Claimants often experienced long waits for a decision on their claim because of this backlog. In May 2007, SSA released a plan designed to eliminate its hearings-level backlog. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) was subsequently asked by Congress to evaluate this plan and issued a report in September 2009.

This testimony discusses SSA’s backlog reduction plan and the challenges the agency faces in managing its overall claims workload. It draws primarily from GAO reports, and recent reports issued by SSA’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG). Figures.

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August 4, 2010 at 11:51 am 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

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