Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Indefinitely postponed in Senate (09/03/1998)

TABLE OF CONTENTS:

Title I: Department of the Treasury

Title II: Postal Service

Title III: Executive Office of the President and Funds

Appropriated to the President

Title IV: Independent Agencies

Title V: General Provisions

Title VI: General Provisions

Title VII: Child Care in Federal Facilities

Title VIII: Office of National Drug Control Policy

Reauthorization

Title IX: Haitian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act of 1998

Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for FY 1999 for the Treasury Department, the U.S. Postal Service, the Executive Office of the President, and certain independent agencies. Title I: Department of the Treasury - Treasury Department Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for the Department of the Treasury for: (1) departmental offices; (2) automation enhancement; (3) the Office of Inspector General; (4) repair and restoration of the Treasury building and annex; (5) the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network; (6) violent crime reduction programs; (7) the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, including amounts for acquisition of additional real property and facilities and maintenance and facility improvements; (8) the Financial Management Service; (9) the Debt Collection Improvement Account; (10) the Federal Financing Bank; (11) the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; (12) the U.S. Customs Service, including amounts for operations and maintenance of marine vessels and aircraft and collection of the Harbor Maintenance Fee; (13) the Bureau of the Public Debt; (14) the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), including amounts for tax law enforcement, earned income tax credit compliance and error reduction initiatives, information systems, and information technology investments; and (15) the Secret Service, including an amount for construction and improvement of facilities.

(Sec. 108) Expresses the opposition of the Senate to random audits of taxpayers.

(Sec. 117) Amends the Federal judicial code to provide that any property with respect to which certain financial transactions are prohibited or regulated under specified provisions of the Trading with the Enemy Act and the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, provisions of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 prohibiting assistance to Cuba, or any order, regulation, or license issued pursuant thereto shall be subject to execution or attachment in aid of execution of any judgment relating to a claim for which a foreign state claiming such property is not immune from the jurisdiction of U.S. courts in cases where damages are sought against the state for injury or death caused by torture, extrajudicial killing, aircraft sabotage, hostage taking, or support for such acts. Makes such requirement inapplicable if, at the time the property is expropriated or seized by the foreign state, the property has been held in title by a natural person or held in trust for the benefit of a natural person.

Requires the Secretaries of the Treasury and State, at the request of any party in whose favor a judgment has been issued with respect to a claim for which the foreign state is not immune, to assist any judgment creditor or court in identifying, locating, and executing against the property of such state.

(Sec. 118) Amends the Federal criminal code to redefine the terms "shotgun" and "rifle" as weapons using the energy of an explosive (currently, the energy of the explosive in a fixed shotgun shell or metallic cartridge).

Expands the definition of "antique firearm" to include muzzle loading rifles, shotguns, or pistols that use black powder or a black powder substitute and cannot use fixed ammunition. Excludes from such definition: (1) weapons that incorporate firearm frames or receivers; (2) firearms converted into muzzle loading weapons; or (3) muzzle loading weapons that can be readily converted to fire fixed ammunition by specified means of replacement.

Sets forth authorized uses of, and limitations on, funds made available under this title.

Title II: Postal Service - Postal Service Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for payments to the Postal Service Fund for revenue foregone on free and reduced rate mail.

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

Title III: Executive Office of the President and Funds Appropriated to the President - Executive Office Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for: (1) compensation of the President and the White House office; (2) operating, maintenance, and reimbursable expenses of the Executive Residence at the White House; (3) special assistance to the President and the official residence of the Vice President; (4) the Council of Economic Advisers; (5) the Office of Policy Development; (6) the National Security Council; (7) the Office of Administration; (8) the Office of Management and Budget (OMB); (9) the Office of National Drug Control Policy; (10) Federal drug control programs, including amounts for the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas Program and for a national anti-drug campaign for youth; and (11) emergency expenses related to year 2000 (Y2K) conversion of Federal information technology systems.

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

Title IV: Independent Agencies - Independent Agencies Appropriations Act, 1999 - Makes appropriations for the: (1) Committee for Purchase From People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled; (2) Federal Election Commission; (3) Federal Labor Relations Authority; and (4) General Services Administration (GSA), including amounts for the Federal Buildings Fund, Government-wide policy and operations, Office of Inspector General, and allowances and office staff for former Presidents.

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

(Sec. 409) Authorizes the GSA Administrator to convey without consideration to the city of Racine, Wisconsin, certain excess real property containing the Army Reserve Center.

(Sec. 410) Requires the GSA Administrator to enter into a lease to acquire space for the Department of Transportation headquarters.

(Sec. 411) Appropriates funds to the Architect of the Capitol for security of the Capitol complex.

(Sec. 412) Authorizes the GSA Administrator to convey property comprising the U.S. Naval Observatory-Alternate Time Service Laboratory to the University of Miami for research-related purposes if such property is determined to be surplus property.

Makes appropriations for: (1) the Merit Systems Protection Board; (2) the National Archives and Records Administration, including amounts for repairs and restoration of archives; (3) the National Historical Publications and Records Commission; (4) the Office of Government Ethics; (5) the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), including an amount for the Office of Inspector General; (6) Government contributions for health and life insurance benefits for annuitants; (7) the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund; (8) the Office of Special Counsel; and (9) the U.S. Tax Court.

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

Title V: General Provisions - Sets forth prohibited uses of funds made available under this Act.

(Sec. 511) Amends the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971 to require the staff director and the general counsel of the Federal Election Commission to be appointed by an affirmative vote of at least four Commission members. Limits such individuals' terms of office to six years, but authorizes renewal of terms by an affirmative vote of at least three Commission members. Authorizes such individuals to serve after expiration of their terms until successors have been appointed.

Continues terms of individuals serving in such offices on this Act's enactment date until January 1, 2008, at which time renewal of terms is authorized.

Title VI: General Provisions - Sets forth authorized and prohibited uses of funds appropriated for Federal departments, agencies, and corporations.

(Sec. 625) Requires the OMB Director to report biennially to the Congress: (1) estimates of annual costs and benefits of Federal rules and paperwork in the aggregate, by agency and agency program, and by major rule; (2) impacts of Federal regulation on State, local, and tribal government, small business, wages, and economic growth; and (3) recommendations for reform.

Directs the OMB Director to issue guidelines to agencies to standardize measures of costs and benefits and the format of accounting statements.

(Sec. 632) Bars the use of funds made available for the Customs Service in this Act to allow the importation of any good produced or manufactured by forced or indentured child labor.

(Sec. 634) Requires the Director of the U.S. Marshals Service to conduct a quarterly threat assessment on the Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy.

(Sec. 641) Authorizes the Secretary of the Treasury, upon submission of proper documentation, to reimburse importers of large capacity military magazine rifles for which authority was granted to import such firearms into the United States on or before November 14, 1997, and which were released under bond to the importer by the Customs Service on or before February 10, 1998, provided that such an importer abandons title to the firearms to the United States.

(Sec. 642) Requires the Federal Acquisition Regulation to be revised to include the use of forced or indentured child labor in mining, production, or manufacturing on the list of causes for debarment and suspension from contracting with executive agencies.

(Sec. 643) Provides for a 3.6 percent increase in rates of basic pay for Federal employees for FY 1999.

(Sec. 644) Amends Federal law to require compensation at time-and-a-half for any hours worked in excess of 106 during a biweekly pay period or 53 in an administrative workweek by Federal fire fighters.

Sets forth pay provisions with respect to Federal fire fighters.

Grants fire fighters subject to such pay provisions whose regular tours of duty average at least 60 hours or less per week and exclude a basic 40-hour workweek an increase in basic pay equal to two step-increases of the applicable General Schedule grade. Provides that such increase shall not be an equivalent increase in pay.

(Sec. 645) Amends Federal law to require the Postal Rate Commission to report annually to the Congress on costs, revenues, and volumes accrued by the Postal Service in connection with mail matter conveyed between the United States and other countries.

(Sec. 647) Extends for five years certain provisions of the Undetectable Firearms Act of 1988 which are currently due to expire ten years after such Act's enactment.

(Sec. 648) Expresses the sense of the Congress that the Postal Service should issue a stamp honoring the life of Oskar Schindler.

(Sec. 649) Prohibits funds appropriated by this Act from being available to pay for an abortion or for the administrative expenses of any Federal employee health plan which provides benefits for abortions. Makes such prohibition inapplicable if the mother's life would be endangered if the fetus were carried to term or in cases of rape or incest.

(Sec. 651) Bars the expenditure of funds appropriated by this Act by OPM to enter into or renew any contract for a Federal employee health benefits plan which provides: (1) coverage for prescription drugs unless such plan also provides equivalent coverage for all prescription contraceptive drugs or devices approved by the Food and Drug Administration; or (2) benefits for outpatient services provided by a health care professional unless such plan also provides equivalent benefits for outpatient contraceptive services. Makes exceptions to such prohibition for religious health plans.

(Sec. 652) Directs the Customs Service to: (1) study the effectiveness of requiring all spring wheat, durum, or barley imports to be imported through a single port of entry; (2) determine whether such imports could be imported through a single port of entry until the Canadian Wheat Board or the Canadian Government discloses all information necessary to determine the cost and price for such grains being exported to the United States and whether such cost or price violates any U.S. law or violates, or denies benefits to the United States under, any trade agreement; and (3) report study results to specified congressional committees.

(Sec. 653) Directs each Federal agency, before implementing policies and regulations that may affect family well-being, to assess such actions with respect to specified criteria. Requires each agency to: (1) certify to the OMB Director and the Congress that such policy or regulation has been assessed in accordance with this section; and (2) provide adequate rationale for implementation of each policy or regulation that may negatively affect family well-being.

Directs OMB to: (1) ensure that policies and regulations proposed by agencies are implemented consistent with this section; and (2) compile, index, and submit annually to the Congress the written certifications received.

Directs the White House Office of Policy Development to: (1) assess proposed policies and regulations in accordance with this Act; (2) provide evaluations of such policies and regulations to OMB; and (3) advise the President on policy and regulatory actions that may be taken to strengthen the institutions of marriage and family in the United States.

Requires an agency to conduct an assessment of a proposed policy or regulation in accordance with this Act upon request by a Member of Congress.

(Sec. 654) Makes it out of order to consider any bill or joint resolution reported by a committee if the committee report does not contain an analysis of the probable impact of the measure on family well-being and children.

(Sec. 655) Directs the Secretary of Energy to purchase and transport a specified amount of oil for the Strategic Petroleum Reserve upon a determination by the President that current market conditions are imperiling domestic oil production from marginal and small producers.

(Sec. 656) Expresses the sense of the Congress that the Postal Service should issue a stamp honoring the 150th anniversary of Irish immigration to the United States during the Irish Famine.

(Sec. 657) Community and Postal Participation Act of 1998 - Modifies Federal postal provisions to require 60-days' written notice before the relocation, closing, or consolidation (currently, the closing or consolidation) of a post office. Requires such notice to be: (1) hand delivered or delivered by mail; and (2) published in one or more newspapers of general circulation within the zip codes served by such post office.

Sets forth provisions which: (1) allow any person served by the post office to offer an alternative relocation, consolidation, or closing proposal within such 60-day period; and (2) require the Postal Service to conduct a hearing at the request of the community served to allow affected persons to present oral or written testimony.

Revises factors to be considered in deciding whether to relocate, close, or consolidate a post office to include: (1) the extent to which the post office is part of a core downtown business area; (2) the sentiment of the community served; (3) whether postal officials negotiated with persons served; (4) whether management of the post office contributed to a desire to relocate; and (5) the adequacy of the existing post office. Requires the Postal Service to respond to all alternative proposals by way of a consolidated report containing findings and determinations and to make a copy of such report available at the post office that is the subject of the report.

Provides for an appeal to the Postal Rate Commission of a decision to relocate, close, or consolidate.

Requires the Postal Service to follow a community's public participation procedures to address the relocation, closing, or consolidation of buildings in the community if participation requirements of such procedures are more stringent than those provided in this Act.

Requires the Postal Service, in making a determination to relocate, close, or consolidate any post office, to comply with any zoning, planning, or land use laws or building codes of State or local public entities, including the zoning authority of the local jurisdiction.

Includes within the Postal Service policy with respect to planning and building new postal facilities that the Service consider the effect a new facility may have on the community and the service provided by any facility currently in operation at the time that such a decision is made.

(Sec. 658) Designates the U.S. Postal Service building located at 180 East Kellogg Boulevard in Saint Paul, Minnesota, as the Eugene J. McCarthy Post Office Building.

(Sec. 660) Provides that, for purposes of provisions of law relating to tort liability, certain Federal law enforcement officers and special agents in the Diplomatic Security Service of the Department of State shall be construed to be acting within the scope of their office or employment if they take any reasonable action, including the use of force, to: (1) protect an individual in such an officer's presence from a crime of violence; (2) provide immediate assistance to an individual who has suffered or who is threatened with bodily harm; or (3) prevent the escape of any individual who such an officer reasonably believes to have committed, in his or her presence, a crime of violence.

Title VII: Child Care in Federal Facilities - Quality Child Care for Federal Employees - Mandates that a Federal agency that either operates, or contracts for operation of, a child care facility in an executive agency comply with specified child care standards related to child care in the State or locality involved or obtain the applicable State or local licenses for the facility.

Directs the GSA Administrator to: (1) establish and enforce child care health, safety, and facility standards; and (2) require child care facility compliance with accreditation standards issued by a child care accreditation entity. Prescribes enforcement procedures.

Instructs the Chief Administrative Officer of the House of Representatives, the Librarian of Congress, and a designated Senate entity to promulgate regulations for child care centers in legislative facilities which are no less stringent than those issued by the Administrator.

Provides for technical assistance, studies, and reviews in order to assist executive agency and child care center operator compliance with this Act.

Instructs the Administrator to establish an interagency council to facilitate cooperation and coordinate policy regarding the provision of child care in the Federal Government.

Authorizes appropriations.

(Sec. 704) Amends Federal law to authorize agencies to conduct pilot projects to test innovative approaches to providing alternative forms of quality child care assistance for Federal employees. Requires evaluations of such projects to be submitted to the Administrator.

Requires child care centers in federally owned or leased facilities to ensure that center employees (including existing employees) undergo criminal history background checks.

(Sec. 705) Directs heads of Federal agencies to require child care facilities in executive or legislative facilities first operated after the one-year period beginning on this Act's enactment date to provide reasonable accommodations for the needs of breast-fed infants and their mothers, including lactation areas, in the operating plans for such facilities.

Title VIII: Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization - Office of National Drug Control Policy Reauthorization Act of 1998 - Establishes an Office of National Drug Control Policy in the Executive Office of the President, to be headed by a Director of National Drug Control Policy.

Establishes a fund in the Treasury for the receipt of gifts to aid the work of the Office.

(Sec. 804) Describes the Director's responsibilities.

Requires submission of proposed drug control budget requests of Federal agencies with responsibilities under the National Drug Control Program (Program) to the Director, who shall submit a consolidated Program budget to implement the National Drug Control Strategy to the President. Bars reprogramming or transfer requests of amounts exceeding $5 million that are included in the Program budget without the Director's approval.

(Sec. 805) Requires heads of Program agencies to provide information collected by such agencies to the Director relating to: (1) drug abuse control; or (2) the manner in which amounts made available to such agencies for drug control are being used.

Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to submit to the Director an annual assessment of the acreage of illegal drug cultivation in the United States.

Requires heads of Program agencies to notify the Director of any proposed change in policies relating to Program activities prior to implementation of the change.

(Sec. 806) Directs the President to submit a National Drug Control Strategy to the Congress to set forth a plan covering a period of up to ten years for reducing drug abuse and the consequences of drug abuse in the United States by limiting the availability of, and reducing the demand for, illegal drugs. Provides for annual Strategy progress reports to the Congress as well.

Requires the Director to submit to the Congress a description of the national drug control performance measurement system.

(Sec. 807) Establishes a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas Program within the Office. Authorizes the Director to designate, and take certain actions with respect to, such areas, including providing increased Federal assistance.

(Sec. 808) Establishes the Counter-Drug Technology Assessment Center within the Office to serve as the central counter-drug technology research and development organization of the Federal Government.

(Sec. 809) Establishes the President's Council on Counter-Narcotics and the Parents Advisory Council on Youth Drug Abuse. Authorizes appropriations for the Parents Advisory Council.

(Sec. 811) Requires the Director to submit to the Congress and Federal drug control program agencies a report containing certain data on seizures of specified drugs in border areas, arrests, prices of drugs, and amounts of Federal resources devoted to drug interdiction and securing borders.

(Sec. 812) Expresses the sense of the Congress with respect to the formation of a multilateral alliance to address problems related to international drug trafficking in the Western Hemisphere. Requires the President to report to the Congress on a proposal for such an alliance.

(Sec. 815) Authorizes appropriations for FY 1998 through 2002 to carry out this title.

(Sec. 816) Repeals provisions of this title, with a specified exception, on September 30, 2002.

Title IX: Haitian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act of 1998 - Haitian Refugee Immigration Fairness Act of 1998 - Provides for the permanent resident status adjustment of certain Haitian nationals (and their spouses and children) who were paroled into the United States or who filed for amnesty before December 31, 1995. Requires adjustment applications to be filed before April 1, 2000.

Sets forth stay of removal and work authorization provisions.

Provides that adjustment of status under this Act shall not deem an alien to be a "qualified alien" eligible to receive supplemental security income or Medicaid benefits. Makes such provision inapplicable after October 1, 2003.

(Sec. 903) Requires the Attorney General to collect certain data on detained asylum seekers and other aliens, including criminal aliens.