Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed Senate amended (08/31/1998)

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Title I: Department of Justice

Title II: Department of Commerce and Related Agencies

Title III: The Judiciary

Title IV: Department of State and Related Agencies

Title V: Related Agencies

Title VI: General Provisions

Title VII: Rescissions

Title VIII: Local Government Law Enforcement Block Grant Act

Title IX: National Whale Conservation Fund Act

Title X: VAWA Restoration Act

Title XI: Temporary Agricultural Workers

Title XII: Nursing Relief For Disadvantaged Areas

Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for FY 1999 for the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the judiciary, and related agencies.

Title I: Department of Justice - Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for the Department of Justice for: (1) general administration; (2) a joint automated booking system; (3) counterterrorism activities; (4) administration of pardon and clemency petitions and immigration-related activities; (5) the Office of Inspector General; (6) the U.S. Parole Commission; (7) legal activities; (8) antitrust activities; (9) the Offices of U.S. Attorneys; (10) the U.S. Trustee Program; (11) the Foreign Claims Settlement Commission; (12) the U.S. Marshals Service, including an amount for expenses related to prisoners in the custody of the Marshals Service; (13) fees and expenses of witnesses; (14) the Community Relations Service; (15) certain uses of the Assets Forfeiture Fund; (16) administrative expenses related to the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act; (17) interagency law enforcement with respect to organized crime drug trafficking; (18) the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); (19) construction for specified agencies; (20) the Drug Enforcement Administration; (21) the Immigration and Naturalization Service; (22) the Federal prison system, including amounts for buildings and facilities; (23) the Office of Justice programs; (24) State and local law enforcement assistance, including amounts for violent crime reduction programs; (25) the Executive Office for Weed and Seed; (26) community-oriented policing services for violent crime reduction; (27) juvenile justice programs; and (28) public safety officers' benefits.

Sets forth authorized uses of, and limitations on, such funds.

Establishes a Justice Prisoner and Alien Transportation System Fund for the payment of expenses related to the scheduling and transportation of U.S. prisoners and illegal and criminal aliens in the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service. Makes appropriations for initial capitalization of the Fund.

(Sec. 102) Prohibits the use of funds appropriated by this title to: (1) pay for abortions except where the life of the mother would be endangered if the fetus were carried to term, or in the case of rape; or (2) require any person to perform or facilitate an abortion.

(Sec. 110) Amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to remove the authority for beneficiaries of certain petitions for classification or applications for labor certifications to apply to the Attorney General for adjustment of status to that of an alien lawfully admitted for permanent residence. Repeals provisions which allow certain employment-based immigrants to adjust to permanent residence status.

Establishes the Immigration Detention and Naturalization Activity Account in the Treasury. Provides for: (1) the deposit of certain application fees into the Account; and (2) refunds to any appropriation for expenses incurred by the Attorney General for the detention of aliens, construction relating to such detention, and activities relating to naturalization.

(Sec. 112) Prohibits any immigration inspection fee from being charged in connection with the arrival of any passenger, other than aircraft passengers, whose journey originated in a U.S. State.

(Sec. 115) Amends the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 to require the Attorney General to provide investigative assistance to tribal law enforcement agencies.

(Sec. 116) Repeals provisions of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 that provide for an automated entry and exit control system. Revises provisions requiring aliens to present border identification cards that match appropriate biometric characteristics in order to cross the border to phase in such requirement over a number of years, requiring all cards in circulation as of April 1, 1998, to match by October 1, 2003. (Current law applies such requirement to all cards presented three years after such Act's enactment date.)

(Sec. 117) Directs the President, with the FY 2000 budget request, to present the specific dollar amounts budgeted, by appropriation account and line item, for counterterrorism and antiterrorism programs. Requires a narrative outline of the content of, and detail of the amounts budgeted for, each program for FY 1998 through 2000 and the succeeding five years of the Federal Counterterrorism Strategy.

(Sec. 118) Amends the Controlled Substances Act to make unlawful certain knowing failures to provide records or reports, including those pertaining to listed chemicals and certain machines. (Current law provides that all failures to do so are unlawful.) Limits penalties for knowing violations regarding reports or recordkeeping to $500 if no unauthorized person obtains unlawful control of a controlled substance as a result of such a violation.

(Sec. 120) Requires the General Accounting Office to report to specified congressional committees on compliance of the Department of Justice and all U.S. Attorneys with the Guidance on the Use of the False Claims Act in Civil Health Care Matters.

(Sec. 121) Amends the Federal criminal code to require applicants for firearm dealer licenses to certify that secure gun storage or safety devices will be available at any place in which firearms are sold under the license to persons who are not licensees, except in certain cases where such storage is temporarily unavailable. Authorizes revocation of licenses of dealers who fail to have such storage or devices available.

(Sec. 122) Amends the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 to authorize grants to non-Federal individuals or entities for firearm safety education.

(Sec. 123) Amends the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act to prohibit the disposition of a firearm or ammunition to, and the possession of a firearm or ammunition by, an alien who has been admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa.

Requires the statement required from a firearms transferee to contain a statement that the transferee is not an alien who has been admitted to the United States under a nonimmigrant visa.

Sets forth provisions regarding: (1) exceptions for aliens admitted to the United States for lawful hunting or sporting purposes and for certain official government representatives, officials, distinguished foreign visitors, and foreign law enforcement officers; and (2) waivers.

(Sec. 124) Amends the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 to require States, in order to receive violent offender incarceration or truth-in-sentencing incentive grants, to have programs of mental health screening and treatment for categories of convicted juvenile and other offenders during periods of incarceration and juvenile and criminal justice supervision. (Current law requires States to implement policies for the recognition of the rights and needs of crime victims in order to be eligible for such grants.) Authorizes grant funds to be applied to such programs.

(Sec. 125) Amends the Federal criminal code to apply certain authorized investigative demand procedures currently applicable to Federal health care offenses to acts involving Federal offenses relating to sexual exploitation or abuse of children as well.

(Sec. 126) Amends the Incentive Grants for Local Delinquency Prevention Programs Act to require priority in the awarding of grants for local delinquency prevention to be given to applicants that, among other things, have in effect a policy that requires State and local law enforcement agencies to detain for up to 24 hours any juvenile who unlawfully possesses a firearm in a school upon a finding that the juvenile may be a danger to himself or herself, or to the community.

(Sec. 127) Directs the Secretary of the Treasury to endeavor to expand the number of cities and counties participating in the Youth Crime Gun Interdiction Initiative (YCGII-Exile) by specified amounts in FY 2001 through 2004.

Earmarks funds appropriated for the Offices of U.S. Attorneys in this Act for the hiring of additional assistant U.S. attorneys and investigators in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, for a demonstration project to prosecute individuals in possession of firearms in violation of Federal law.

Provides for the sharing of information derived from YCGII-Exile with State and local law enforcement through on-line computer access as soon as such capability is available.

Requires the Secretary to award grants to States, counties, and cities to assist such entities in the tracing of firearms and participation in YCGII-Exile.

(Sec. 128) Amends the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 to expand the categories of sex offenders to whom penalties apply for knowingly failing to register under such Act or in States in which they reside, are employed, or are students. Removes monetary penalties for such offenses and retains existing imprisonment penalties.

(Sec. 129) Amends the Police Corps Act to extend and increase the authorization of appropriations to carry out Police Corps training and education programs.

(Sec. 130) Amends the Federal criminal code to prohibit, and set penalties for, publishing, through the use of any facility in or affecting interstate or foreign commerce (including any interactive computer service), any identifying information (i.e., name, address, telephone number, social security number, or electronic mail address) relating to a minor who has not attained age 17, for the purpose of soliciting any person to engage in sexual activity which is a criminal offense under Federal or State law.

(Sec. 131) Amends the Federal judicial code to transfer Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, from the State's Eastern Judicial District to its Middle Judicial District.

(Sec. 132) Amends the Federal criminal code to prohibit a court from requiring a party to a civil action regarding prison conditions to pay the compensation or expenses of a special master. Applies such prohibition to expenses for a special master for actions commenced before, on, or after the date of enactment of the Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Makes such prohibition inapplicable to a special master appointed before such Act's enactment if the expenses relate to activities beginning on such Act's enactment date and ending on this section's enactment date.

(Sec. 133) Authorizes nursing facilities or home health care agencies to submit requests to the Attorney General to conduct a search and exchange of specified FBI criminal history records regarding an applicant for employment if the employment position is involved in direct patient care. Permits such information to be used only for purposes of determining suitability for employment of an applicant.

Authorizes the Attorney General to charge a fee of up to $50 per request.

Prescribes criminal penalties for unauthorized use of such information.

Absolves a nursing facility or home health care agency that denies employment based on such information from liability in any action brought by the applicant in cases where the information is incomplete or inaccurate.

(Sec. 134) Bars the use of funds made available to the Department of Justice under this Act for any expense relating to foreign travel by an employee of the Antitrust Division if such travel is for purposes of encouraging an antitrust action by a foreign country against a U.S. company that is a defendant in any pending antitrust action in the United States in which the United States is a plaintiff.

(Sec. 135) Amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to make certain provisions regarding the deportability of aliens inapplicable to certain aliens who are orphans adopted by U.S. citizens unless such an alien has knowingly declined U.S. citizenship.

(Sec. 136) Prohibits, unless the person concerned consents or disclosure is pursuant to a court order or a verdict of liability has been entered, the disclosure of specified financial records and personal information of a person employed or formerly employed by a Federal, State, or local jail, prison, or correctional facility in actions for deprivation of rights against such facilities or persons brought by a prisoner.

(Sec. 137) Extends through FY 1999 temporary protected status for certain nationals of Liberia or aliens with no nationality who last resided in Liberia.

(Sec. 138) Makes a numerical limitation on refugees under the Immigration and Nationality Act inapplicable to certain aliens who were U.S. Government employees, employees of nongovernmental organizations based in the United States, or other Iraqi nationals who were moved to Guam by the U.S. Government in 1996 or 1997 and granted asylum. Limits fees paid by such individuals for employment authorization or adjustment of status to permanent resident to the amount imposed on a refugee for such purposes.

(Sec. 140) Amends the Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 to include older women within the scope of the program providing grants to combat violent crimes against women. Adds to the list of grant purposes grants for developing a curriculum to train and assist law enforcement and court officers and prosecutors in recognizing, investigating, and prosecuting instances of elder domestic abuse.

Makes elder domestic abuse experts eligible for certain State grants for training in identification and response to violent crimes against women.

(Sec. 141) Requires the U.S. Sentencing Commission to: (1) review the Federal sentencing guidelines on aggravated sexual abuse, sexual abuse, sexual abuse of a minor or ward, coercion and enticement of a juvenile, and transportation of minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity; and (2) promulgate amendments to the Guidelines to provide an appropriate sentencing enhancement if the defendant used a computer or knowingly misrepresented his or her identity with the intent to persuade, entice, or coerce a child of an age specified in such sections to engage in prohibited sexual activity.

Directs the U.S. Sentencing Commission to: (1) review the Federal sentencing guidelines on criminal sexual abuse, the production of sexually explicit material, the possession of materials depicting a child engaging in sexually explicit conduct, coercion and enticement of minors, and the transportation of minors; and (2) promulgate amendments to provide an appropriate sentencing enhancement in any case in which the defendant engaged in a pattern of activity of sexual abuse or exploitation of a minor.

Amends the Federal criminal code to require a term of imprisonment of up to twice the period that would otherwise apply for repeat violations of Federal or State laws regarding illegal transportation for illegal sexual activity and related crimes, sexual abuse, or sexual exploitation and other abuse of children.

Increases imprisonment penalties for specified offenses, including those pertaining to minors, with respect to transportation, the use of interstate commerce, and travel for purposes of engaging in criminal sexual activity.

Directs the U.S. Sentencing Commission to review and promulgate amendments to the Guidelines relating to: (1) transportation for illegal sexual activity and related crimes to provide for the amendments made by this Act; and (2) the distribution of pornography under the chapter relating to sexual exploitation and other abuse of children to clarify that the term "distribution of pornography" applies to its distribution for monetary remuneration or for a nonpecuniary interest.

Authorizes appropriations to the Department of Justice to procure the services of individuals to serve as guardians ad litem for children who are victims of, or witnesses to, crimes involving abuse or exploitation.

Title II: Department of Commerce and Related Agencies - Department of Commerce and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for the Department of Commerce for: (1) the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative; (2) the International Trade Commission; (3) international trade administration; (4) export administration and national security activities; (5) the Economic Development Administration; (6) minority business development; (7) economic and statistical analysis programs; (8) the Census Bureau; (9) the National Telecommunications and Information Administration; (10) public telecommunications facilities, planning, and construction grants; (11) information infrastructure grants; (12) the Patent and Trademark Office; (13) the Under Secretary for Technology-Office of Technology Policy; (14) the National Institute of Standards and Technology, including the Manufacturing Extension Partnership and for construction and renovation of facilities; (15) the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, including amounts for procurement, acquisition, and construction of capital assets; (16) the Coastal Zone Management Fund; (17) the Fishermen's Contingency Fund; (18) the Foreign Fishing Observer Fund; (19) the fisheries finance program account; (20) general administration; and (21) the Office of Inspector General.

Sets forth authorized uses of, and limitations on, such funds.

(Sec. 209) Amends the Communications Act of 1934 to require anyone who, in interstate or foreign commerce in or through the World Wide Web, is engaged in the commercial distribution of material that is harmful to minors to restrict access to such materials by persons under 17 years of age.

Provides criminal and civil penalties for violations of such requirement, as well as an affirmative defense.

Directs the Attorney General, for the Internet web site of the Department of Justice, and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for their web site, to each make available on such web sites a definition of material that is harmful to minors.

(Sec. 210) Prohibits universal telecommunications services from being provided to any elementary or secondary school unless its administrator has certified to the FCC that it has selected and installed a system for computers with Internet access which filters or blocks matter deemed inappropriate for minors. Prohibits such service with respect to a library having Internet access unless it certifies that it employs such a filtering or blocking system on one or more of its computers. Requires a library to notify the FCC within ten days after changing or terminating such a system.

Requires the determination of what shall be considered inappropriate for minors to be made by the appropriate school, school board, library, or other responsible authority.

(Sec. 211) Prohibits the Copyright Office from implementing, collecting, or awarding copyright royalty fees and provides that no obligation or liability for such fees shall accrue pursuant to the decision of the Librarian of Congress of October 27, 1997, which established a specified monthly royalty fee for the retransmission of distant broadcast signals by satellite carriers before March 31, 1999.

(Sec. 212) Amends Federal air commerce and aviation safety law to modify the definition of "public aircraft" to include aircraft operated for law enforcement, search and rescue, or responses to imminent threats to property or natural resources without regard to whether the aircraft is operated by a governmental unit on behalf of another such unit pursuant to a cost reimbursement agreement.

(Sec. 213) Amends the Controlled Substances Act to limit monthly compensation for defense attorneys appointed in capital cases to that received by the U.S. Attorney for the district in which the action is to be prosecuted.

Amends the Federal criminal code to make such limitation applicable to counsel appointed for certain persons financially unable to obtain adequate representation in Federal district courts.

(Sec. 214) Prohibits the use of funds under this Act to process or register any application filed with the Patent and Trademark Office under the Trademark Act of 1946 for a mark identical to the official tribal insignia of any federally recognized Indian tribe for a period of one year from this Act's enactment date.

Title III: The Judiciary - Judiciary Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for: (1) the Supreme Court, including an amount for care of the building and grounds; (2) the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit; (3) the U.S. Court of International Trade; (4) the courts of appeals, district courts, and other judicial services; (5) defender services; (6) fees of jurors and commissioners; (7) court security; (8) the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts; (9) the Federal Judicial Center; (10) judicial retirement funds; and (11) the U.S. Sentencing Commission.

Sets forth authorized uses of, and limitations on, such funds.

(Sec. 304) Authorizes U.S. judges and justices to receive a salary adjustment during FY 1999. Appropriates funds for such purpose.

Title IV: Department of State and Related Agencies - Department of State and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for the Department of State for: (1) administration of foreign affairs, diplomatic and consular programs; (2) salaries and expenses; (3) the Capital Investment Fund; (4) the Office of Inspector General; (5) representation allowances; (6) protection of foreign missions and officials; (7) security and maintenance of U.S. missions; (8) emergencies in the diplomatic and consular service; (9) the repatriation loans program account; (10) the American Institute in Taiwan; (11) the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability Fund; (12) international organizations, conferences, peacekeeping, and commissions; and (13) the Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.

Appropriates funds for the U.S. Information Agency (USIA) for: (1) international information programs; (2) information technology improvements; (3) educational and cultural exchanges; (4) the Eisenhower Exchange Fellowships, Incorporated; (5) the Israeli Arab Scholarship Program; (6) international broadcasting, including broadcasting to Cuba; (7) radio construction; (8) the Center for Cultural and Technical Interchange Between East and West; (9) the North-South Center; and (10) the National Endowment for Democracy.

Sets forth authorized uses of, and limitations on, such funds.

(Sec. 403) Bars the use of funds made available in this Act by the State Department or USIA to provide assistance to the Palestinian Broadcasting Corporation or a similar organization.

(Sec. 404) Prohibits funds appropriated by this Act from being expended to pay for costs incurred in operating certain diplomatic or consular posts in Vietnam or increasing the number of personnel assigned to such posts unless the President certifies that the Vietnamese Government is cooperating in specified activities regarding resolution of sightings of, and accounting for, prisoners-of-war and individuals missing in action, recovery and analysis of American remains, and investigations in Laos.

(Sec. 405) Grants the Secretary of State discretionary authority to pay tort claims in connection with damages sought against the United States for injury or loss of property or personal injury or death caused by the negligent or wrongful act or omission of a Federal employee in a foreign country with respect to State Department overseas operations.

(Sec. 406) Prohibits the use of funds made available by any Act for: (1) the operation of a U.S. consulate or diplomatic facility in Jerusalem unless such facility is under the supervision of the U.S. Ambassador to Israel; and (2) the publication of any official government document which lists countries and their capital cities unless the publication identifies Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

(Sec. 408) Directs the Secretary, for purposes of registration of birth, certification of nationality, or issuance of a U.S. passport to a citizen born in Jerusalem, to record the place of birth as Israel upon request of the citizen.

(Sec. 409) Directs the Secretary and the Attorney General to waive the combined border crossing card and tourist or business visitor visa fee for certain Mexican citizens under the age of 15. States that such card and visa shall expire on the earlier of the date the child reaches the age of 15 or ten years after the issue date, unless at the request of the parent the card and visa expire the same date as is usually provided for visas issued under the same provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

Requires tourist and business visitor visas to continue to be processed at least until October 1, 2003, in the Mexican border cities of Nogales, Nuevo Laredo, Ciudad Acuna, Piedras Negras, Agua Prieta, and Reynosa.

(Sec. 410) Directs the Secretary to study, with respect to the processing of nonimmigrant visas within the Department of State the: (1) adequacy of staffing at U.S. consular posts; (2) adequacy of service to international tourism; (3) adequacy of computer and technical support to technical posts; and (4) appropriate standard to determine whether a country qualifies as a pilot program country under the visa waiver pilot program.

Requires the Secretary to report annually to the Congress on implementation of timeliness standards for the processing of nonimmigrant visa applications.

(Sec. 412) Prohibits the use of funds made available by any Act to: (1) extradite a U.S. citizen to a foreign nation that is under obligation to surrender persons to the International Criminal Court unless such nation confirms to the United States that applicable prohibitions on reextradition apply to such surrender or gives other assurances that it will not extradite or transfer that citizen to the Court; or (2) provide consent to the extradition or transfer of a U.S. citizen by a foreign country that is under obligation to surrender persons to the Court to a third country unless the third country makes such confirmation.

(Sec. 413) Bars the use of funds made available by any Act (including prior appropriations), unless the Senate has given advice and consent to ratification of the agreement establishing the Court, for: (1) the payment of any representation in, or contribution or provision of support to, the Court; or (2) the U.S. proportionate share of any assessed contribution to the United Nations or any other international organization that is used to provide support to the Court.

Title V: Related Agencies - Makes appropriations for the: (1) Maritime Administration for maritime security, operations and training, and the maritime guaranteed loan program; (2) Commission for the Preservation of America's Heritage Abroad; (3) Commission on Civil Rights; (4) Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe; (5) Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC); (6) FCC; (7) Federal Maritime Commission; (8) Federal Trade Commission; (9) Legal Services Corporation; (10) Marine Mammal Commission; (11) Commission on Ocean Policy; (12) Securities and Exchange Commission; (13) Small Business Administration, including amounts for the Office of Inspector General, business and disaster loans, and capital for the Surety Bond Guarantees Revolving Fund; and (14) State Justice Institute.

Sets forth authorized uses of, and limitations on, such funds.

Title VI: General Provisions - Sets forth limitations on the use of funds under this Act.

(Sec. 607) Sets forth Buy American provisions.

(Sec. 608) Prohibits the use of funds made available by this Act to: (1) enforce any EEOC guidelines covering harassment based on religion if such guidelines do not differ from proposed guidelines of October 1, 1993; or (2) provide specified personal comforts in the Federal prison system.

(Sec. 613) Prohibits the use of funds made available in this Act to issue visas to certain individuals from Haiti, including those involved in specified extrajudicial and political killings.

(Sec. 614) Prohibits the use of funds made available in any Act to issue or renew a fishing permit or authorization for any U.S. fishing vessel exceeding a specified length, tonnage, or horsepower that would allow such vessel to engage in fishing in any fishery within the U.S. exclusive economic zone unless: (1) a certificate of documentation had been issued for the vessel, endorsed with a fishery endorsement effective on September 25, 1997, and endorsed at all times thereafter; or (2) the regional fishery management council recommends, and the Secretary of Commerce approves, a fishery management plan that allows the vessel to engage in such fishing.

Invalidates any permit or authorization issued or renewed prior to this Act's enactment date for a vessel exceeding such limits that would allow the vessel to engage in fishing for any Atlantic mackerel or herring in the waters off the U.S. east coast during FY 1999 unless the Secretary has approved a plan to allow such fishing.

(Sec. 615) Prohibits the use of funds made available in this Act to pay the expenses of an election officer appointed by a court to oversee an election of any officer or trustee for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

(Sec. 616) Amends the International Security and Development Corporation Act of 1985 to reduce the number of members of the Commission for the Preservation of America's Heritage Abroad.

(Sec. 618) Directs the Secretary of Commerce to study and report to the Appropriations Committee on: (1) taxation of the Internet by States and political subdivisions; (2) access to the Internet; and (3) communications and transactions conducted through the Internet.

(Sec. 619) Authorizes, upon the joint motion of the United States and the State of Alaska and the issuance of an order by the U.S. District Court for the District of Alaska, the deposit of the joint trust funds or any portion thereof, including any interest accrued thereon, received, or to be received by the United States and Alaska under the Agreement and Consent decree issued in United States v. Exxon Corporation (i.e., the Exxon Valdez oil spill consent decree), in appropriate accounts outside the Court Registry, including the Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration Fund.

Allows any interest accrued under the authority of this section to be used only for grants for marine research and monitoring and for community and economic restoration projects.

Terminates the authority provided in this section on September 30, 2002, unless by September 30, 2001, the trustees have submitted to the Congress legislation to establish a board to administer funds invested, interest received, and grants awarded from such interest.

(Sec. 620) Prohibits funds appropriated under any law from being used for any criminal background check system that implements requirements under the Federal criminal code in connection with certain restrictions on the transfer of firearms unless such system: (1) results in the immediate destruction of information submitted by persons determined not to be prohibited from owning a firearm; and (2) does not require any tax or fee for the implementation of such requirements.

Authorizes persons aggrieved by a violation of such prohibition to seek damages in a Federal district court.

(Sec. 621) Expresses the sense of the Senate that the Congress and the President should: (1) continue to rid the country of debt and work to balance the budget without counting social security trust fund surpluses; (2) work in a bipartisan way on specific legislation to reform the social security system to ensure that it is financially sound and will be available for future generations; (3) save Social Security first; and (4) return all remaining surpluses to American taxpayers.

(Sec. 622) Directs the Judicial Conference of the United States to report to specified congressional committees on whether an amendment to Rule 6 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure permitting the presence in the grand jury room of counsel for a witness who is testifying before the grand jury would further the interests of justice and law enforcement.

(Sec. 623) Expresses the sense of the Senate that the President should repeal a specified Executive Order issued May 14, 1998, entitled "Federalism" and reissue certain orders of 1987 and 1993.

(Sec. 624) Internet Gambling Prohibition Act of 1998 - Amends the Federal criminal code to make it unlawful for any person or gambling business to place, receive, or otherwise make a bet or wager via the Internet or any other interactive computer service or send, receive, or invite information assisting in the placing of a bet or wager with the intent to send, receive, or invite information assisting in the placing of a bet or wager. Prescribes penalties.

Lists exceptions to such prohibition, including for "rotisserie league" participation and certain lotteries and Indian gaming activities.

Grants the district courts original and exclusive jurisdiction to prevent and restrain violations of this Act.

Authorizes a State attorney general, or other appropriate State official, to institute proceedings under this Act in cases where a violation is alleged to have occur or may occur. Limits enforcement for violations that occur on Indian lands to remedies under the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act.

Permits the court, if the violation originates with the customer of the interactive computer service, to require the service to terminate the customer's account. Requires other relief ordered by the court to be technically feasible for the system in question and reasonably effective in preventing violations of this Act.

Sets forth provisions regarding expedited proceedings.

Directs the Attorney General to submit a report to the Congress that includes: (1) an analysis of the problems associated with enforcing this Act; (2) recommendations for the best use of Department of Justice resources for enforcement; and (3) an estimate of the amount of activity and money being used to gamble on the Internet.

Requires the Secretary of Commerce to submit a report to the Congress that includes: (1) an analysis of existing and potential methods or technologies for filtering or screening transmissions in violation of this Act that originate outside U.S. territorial boundaries; (2) a review of the effect on interactive computer services and the Internet of any court ordered temporary restraining orders or injunctions imposed on such services under this Act; and (3) a calculation of the cost to the economy of illegal gambling on the Internet and other societal costs.

(Sec. 625) Expresses the sense of the Senate that: (1) the President, the Secretary of the Treasury, and the U.S. Trade Representative should emphasize the importance of financial deregulation as fundamental to Japan's economic recovery; and (2) such officials and the Secretaries of Commerce and State should communicate to the Japanese Government that the first priority of the new Japanese Prime Minister should be to restore economic growth in Japan and promote stability in international financial markets.

(Sec. 627) Amends the Communications Act of 1934 to require Internet access providers, at the time of entering into an agreement with a customer to offer Internet access service, to offer the customer (either for a fee or at no charge) screening software designed to limit access to Internet material.

(Sec. 628) Requires the U.S. Trade Representative to report to the Congress an analysis regarding: (1) whether the Korean Government provided subsidies to Hanbo Steel and whether such subsidies had an adverse effect on U.S. companies; and (2) the status of contacts with the Korean Government with respect to industry concerns regarding Hanbo Steel and efforts to eliminate subsidies and contacts with other Asian trading partners regarding the adverse effect of Korean steel subsidies on such partners.

(Sec. 629) Prohibits the expenditure of funds made available for FY 1999 by any Act for enforcing any regulation requiring the installation or operation of the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System aboard U.S. fishing industry vessels.

(Sec. 630) Amends the International Emergency Economic Powers Act to require the President to report to the Congress on any national emergency export controls (which may not exceed one year) that he imposes on agricultural commodities. Declares that, if within 60 days the Congress adopts a joint resolution of approval, such controls shall remain in effect for the period specified, or until the President terminates them, whichever occurs first. States that if Congress fails to adopt a joint resolution of approval, such controls shall cease to be effective upon the expiration of the initial 60-day period.

(Sec. 631) Directs at least four of the new employees authorized in FY 1998 and 1999 for the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to work on investigating pricing practices of the Canadian Wheat Board and determining whether the U.S. spring wheat, barley, or durum wheat industries have suffered injury as a result of those practices. Requires such investigation to determine whether Board practices constitute violations of the antidumping or countervailing duty provisions of the Tariff Act of 1930 or the Trade Act of 1974.

Requires action to be initiated under such Acts if such determination is affirmative.

Directs the U.S. Trade Representative, if the investigation determines that there is no harmonization for cross-border grain transportation between Canada and the United States, to report to the Congress on action to be taken to harmonize such transportation requirements.

(Sec. 632) Amends the Communications Act of 1934 to authorize it to be FCC policy to extend certain authorities for the origination of limited local programming and station operation to a licensee of an existing FM translator station operating in the commercial FM band that is licensed to a community or county with over 700,000 persons, is not an integral part of a larger municipal entity, and lacks a commercial FM radio station. Describes limits on operating authority, including power and antenna height and proximity to the Canadian or Mexican borders.

Provides for renewals of applications of licensees exercising such authorities upon a determination that the public interest would be served.

Title VII: Rescissions - Rescinds specified amounts of funds made available for: (1) the Department of Justice working capital fund; (2) FBI construction, salaries and expenses, and violent crime reduction; (3) the U.S. Travel and Tourism Administration; (4) the Endowment for Children's Educational TV; and (5) the Department of State for contributions to the Interparliamentary Union.

Title VIII: Local Government Law Enforcement Block Grant Act - Local Government Law Enforcement Block Grant Act of 1998 - Requires the Director of the Bureau of Justice Assistance to pay to qualifying local governments specified sums for reducing crime and improving public safety.

Prohibits a local government from expending any of the funds provided under this Act to acquire tanks or armored personnel carriers, fixed wing aircraft, limousines, real estate, yachts, consultants, or vehicles not primarily used for law enforcement unless the Attorney General certifies that extraordinary and exigent circumstances exist that make the use of funds for such purposes essential to the maintenance of public safety and good order. Deems such circumstances to exist with respect to a local government in a rural State upon certification by such government's chief law enforcement officer that such government is experiencing an increase in production or cultivation of a controlled substance or listed chemical as defined in the Controlled Substances Act and that fixed wing aircraft will be used in the detection, disruption, or abatement of such production or cultivation.

Sets forth provisions regarding: (1) the timing of payments; (2) payment adjustments; (3) reservation of sums for adjustments; (4) repayment of unexpended amounts; (5) requirements that such funds not be used to supplant State or local funds; (6) matching funds; (7) oversight accountability and administration; and (8) technology assistance. Authorizes appropriations. Allows appropriations for activities authorized in this Act to be made from the Violent Crime Reduction Trust Fund.

(Sec. 804) Requires the Director to: (1) establish procedures under which a local government is required to provide notice to the Director regarding the proposed use of funds made available under this Act; and (2) establish a process for the ongoing evaluation of projects developed with funds made available under this Act.

Sets forth provisions regarding: (1) general qualification requirements; (2) sanctions for noncompliance; (3) maintenance of effort requirements; (4) the allocation and distribution of funds, including grants to Indian tribes; (5) the use of funds to contract with private, nonprofit entities or community-based organizations; and (6) public participation.

Title IX: National Whale Conservation Fund Act - National Whale Conservation Fund Act of 1998 - Amends the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Establishment Act to authorize the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to establish a national whale conservation endowment fund.

Authorizes the Secretary of Commerce to transfer specified funds to the Foundation.

Title X: VAWA Restoration Act - VAWA Restoration Act - Amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to modify procedures and provide special rules for battered spouses and children with respect to: (1) adjustment of status; and (2) removal and deportation.

Title XI: Temporary Agricultural Workers - Agricultural Job Opportunity Benefits and Security Act of 1998 - Directs the Secretary of Labor to establish a database system of U.S. agricultural worker registries to provide temporary and seasonal agricultural job opportunity and referral information.

Bases registry coverage on job opportunities in a State or group of contiguous States with a common pool of workers. Sets forth individual registrant requirements, including validation of employment status.

(Sec. 1104) Requires an employer (including employer associations) prior to hiring a temporary agricultural worker to apply to the Secretary for a U.S. worker referral from the appropriate registry. Sets forth provisions regarding: (1) employer application and labor- related assurance requirements; and (2) registry search and worker referral by the Secretary, including alien worker visa issuances in cases of insufficient registered workers.

(Sec. 1107) Sets forth employer requirements regarding: (1) wages; (2) housing, including an allowance in lieu of housing; and (3) transportation reimbursement.

(Sec. 1108) Directs the Secretary to establish an enforcement process with respect to employer application violations, including: (1) written notice of finding and opportunity for administrative appeal; (2) payment of back wages; (3) civil monetary penalties; and (4) temporary and permanent program disqualification.

(Sec. 1109) Amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to replace the existing H-2A temporary agricultural worker admissions program with an alternative admissions program. Sets forth provisions regarding: (1) admissibility criteria; (2) length of stay; (3) abandonment of employment; (4) issuance of identification and employment documents; and (5) extension of stay for aliens in the United States.

Prohibits admission of H-2A alien family members.

(Sec. 1110) Includes certain H-2A workers who have complied with applicable visa conditions in the employment-based immigration preference allocation.

(Sec. 1111) Amends the Head Start Act to make certain seasonal agricultural worker families eligible for the migrant and seasonal (as added by this section) Head Start program. Increases the set-aside for specified Head Start programs.

(Sec. 1113) States that additional funds for the registry program, if necessary, shall come from amounts available to Federal and State entities under the Wagner-Peyser Act.

(Sec. 1115) Provides that the President shall not implement any provision of this Act deemed to be in violation of specified principles concerning: (1) simplicity of program procedures to limit the burden on growers; (2) assurance of an adequate labor supply in a timely manner; (3) preference for U.S. farm workers and a means for mitigating against a structural dependency on foreign workers; (4) avoidance of transferring risks and costs from businesses to low wage workers; (5) longer periods of employment for U.S. workers; and (6) assurance of decent wages and working conditions for domestic and foreign farm workers.

Title XII: Nursing Relief for Disadvantaged Areas - Nursing Relief for Disadvantaged Areas Act of 1998 - Amends the Immigration and Nationality Act to establish a nonimmigrant classification for (nonimmigrant) nurses in health professional shortage areas. Sets forth admissions requirements, including a maximum three-year stay. Limits: (1) eligible hospitals; (2) fiscal year entrants; and (3) the number of entrants permitted to work in any one State.

Requires the Secretary of Labor to compile a public list of facilities petitioning for the admission of such nurses.

(Sec. 1203) Directs the Secretary and the Secretary of Health and Human Services to jointly submit recommendations for an alternative solution to using foreign nurses to resolve the U.S. nursing shortage.