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104th Congress                                            Rept. 104-469
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 2d Session                                                      Part 2
_______________________________________________________________________


 
            IMMIGRATION IN THE NATIONAL INTEREST ACT OF 1995

                                _______


                 March 7, 1996.--Ordered to be printed

_______________________________________________________________________


  Mr. Clinger, from the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 2202]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, to whom 
was referred the bill (H.R. 2202) to amend the Immigration and 
Nationality Act to improve deterrence of illegal immigration to 
the United States by increasing border patrol and investigative 
personnel, by increasing penalties for alien smuggling and for 
document fraud, by reforming exclusion and deportation law and 
procedures, by improving the verification system for 
eligibility for employment, and through other measures, to 
reform the legal immigration system and facilitate legal 
entries into the United States, and for other purposes, having 
considered the same, report favorably thereon with amendments 
and recommend that the bill as amended do pass.
    The amendments (stated in terms of the page and line 
numbers of the introduced bill) are as follows:
    Strike section 356 (page 198, line 17, through page 200, 
line 16), and make all necessary technical and conforming 
changes.
    Strike section 523 (page 270, line 16, through page 273, 
line 10), and make all necessary technical and conforming 
changes.

              I. BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR THIS LEGISLATION

    Sections 356 and 523 of H.R. 2202 would have provided the 
Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) authority to hire 
retired Federal employees without a reduction in salary to 
offset the amount of their Federal pensions. Section 356 would 
authorize the employment of up to 300 persons for no more than 
two years to provide support for the Institutional Hearing 
Program, a program established to facilitate the deportation of 
criminal aliens. Section 523 would have authorized the re-
employment of up to 300 persons for no more than two years to 
assist the INS in the processing of backlogged asylum 
applications. Annuitants re-employed under these provisions 
would have been compensated at full salary in addition to their 
annuities. They would not, however, have accumulated additional 
retirement credit for this service.

A. Current use of re-employed annuitants by Federal agencies

    OPM reported that Federal agencies currently rely upon 
73,446 re-employed annuitants. These include 1,794 Civil 
Service Retirement System (CSRS) annuitants, 196 Federal 
Employee Retirement System (FERS) annuitants, and 9,588 retired 
military officers. The vast majority of other re-employed 
annuitants are retired enlisted military personnel. Under 
provisions of 5 U.S.C. Sec. 8344, if a retired CSRS employee 
becomes re-employed in either elective or appointive office, 
the re-employed annuitant's salary for the position is to be 
reduced by an amount equal to the annuity. Comparable 
provisions govern reductions for FERS employees under a formula 
established in 5 U.S.C. Sec. 8421(a). The proposed sections of 
the immigration bill would supersede these reductions, enabling 
annuitants re-employed under these provisions to collect full 
salaries and full pensions during their period of re-
employment. At minimum, these provisions would establish a 
basis for inequitable treatment of employees who are re-
employed under current law mandating pension offset and those 
who might be hired under this authority.

B. Provisions of current regulations

    Under regulations promulgated at 5 C.F.R. Sec. 553.201, 
agencies may petition the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) 
for authority to re-employ individual annuitants without a 
reduction in annuities. Re-employment in such individual cases 
is intended for emergency situations, and requires a request 
from the agency's headquarters to the Director of OPM. These 
provisions would bypass OPM scrutiny and grant direct authority 
for a significant number of individuals to perform support 
functions that would not necessarily meet the rigorous 
knowledge, skills, and abilities requirements of current 
regulations governing these situations. Because existing 
statutes and regulations already provide administrative 
authority to grant the exceptions being proposed, the 
administration informed the Committee on the Judiciary that it 
considers these provisions unnecessary.

C. INS' applications for authority to re-employ annuitants

    The INS is currently hiring numerous Border Patrol 
officers, Immigration Investigators, and Immigration 
Inspectors. It has submitted a request to OPM seeking authority 
to re-employ annuitants to assist with the training of these 
personnel. It has not sought authority to re-employ annuitants 
to perform the functions identified in these provisions. 
Although the INS has a substantial backlog of asylum 
applications, standards for adjudicating asylum cases were 
revised following the adoption of new asylum regulations in 
1990 and the settlement of the court case, American Baptist 
Churches v. Thornburgh. The pool of retired Immigration 
Examiners who had received training in the new asylum 
procedures would be small, so annuitants who would be refired 
to accomplish this function would be required to undergo a 
three-week training program to learn new legal standards for 
the work.
    Although these sections are intended to provide additional 
staffing for the designated functions, they appear likely to 
have wider unanticipated consequences. By eliminating the 
salary reduction that offsets re-employed annuitants' pensions, 
the legislation would enable current employees of these offices 
who might be eligible for retirement to increase their income 
substantially by retiring and returning as re-employed 
annuitants. This factor could present especially severe 
problems for the Institutional Hearing Program, where the 
support envisioned is less technical than the asylum 
adjudication responsibilities and where the agency has a larger 
cadre of senior investigators.
    Beyond the incentives that might adversely affect the 
current workforce, the option to re-employ annuitants without 
reductions in salaries could establish undesirable precedent 
and generate pressure to extend comparable benefits government-
wide. The precedent would increase incentives for retirement 
among employees having critical skills in a way that would 
expose agencies to the vulnerability of losing valuable 
employees unless the government was willing to pay both 
salaries and retirement annuities for the same work.

D. Need for the legislation

    These provisions were included in the Immigration in the 
National Interest Act reported by the Committee on the 
Judiciary. The Committee on the Judiciary could not identify 
the sponsor of these provisions, provided no hearing record or 
analysis to support inclusion of these provisions in the bill 
as reported, and did not object when informed of the Civil 
Service Subcommittee's findings of their inconsistency with 
other provisions of Title 5, United States Code.

             II. LEGISLATIVE HEARINGS AND COMMITTEE ACTIONS

    H.R. 2202, Sections 356 and 523 were referred to the 
Committee on Government Reform and Oversight. The bill was 
marked-up in the Civil Service Subcommittee on March 5, 1996, 
where Subcommittee Member Rep. Burton of Indiana presented an 
amendment to strike sections 356 and 523. This amendment was 
considered and adopted without objection. The Committee met on 
March 7, 1996, and ordered reported the bill H.R. 2202, as 
amended by voice vote.

             III. COMMITTEE HEARINGS AND WRITTEN TESTIMONY

    The Civil Service Subcommittee held no formal hearings on 
H.R. 2202.

                      IV. EXPLANATION OF THE BILL

    The amendment simply strikes section 356 and section 523 of 
H.R. 2202, thereby leaving in place existing law.

                       V. COMPLIANCE WITH RULE XI

    Pursuant to rule XI, 2(l)(3)(A), of the Rules of the House 
of Representatives, under the authority of rule X, clause 
2(b)(1) and clause 3(f), the results and findings from those 
oversight activities are incorporated in the recommendations 
found in the bill and in this report.

                  VI. BUDGET ANALYSIS AND PROJECTIONS

    This Act provides for no new authorization or budget 
authority or tax expenditures. Consequently, the provisions of 
section 308(a) of the Congressional Budget Act are not 
applicable.

         VII. COST ESTIMATE OF THE CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE

                  VIII. INFLATIONARY IMPACT STATEMENT

    In accordance with rule XI, clause 2(l)(4) of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, this legislation is assessed to 
have no inflationary effect on prices and costs in the 
operations of the national economy.

                      IX. CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    The bill was referred to this committee for consideration 
of such provisions of the bill as fall within the jurisdiction 
of this committee pursuant to clause 1(g) of rule X of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives. The changes made to 
existing law by the amendment reported by the Committee on the 
Judiciary are shown in the report filed by that committee 
(Rept. 104-469, Part 1). The amendments made by this committee 
do not make any changes in existing law.

                      X. COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATIONS

    On March 7, 1996, a quorum being present, the Committee 
ordered the bill favorably reported.

Committee on Government Reform and Oversight--104th Congress rollcall

    Date: March 7, 1996.
    Final Passage of H.R. 2202, as amended.
    Offered by: Hon. William F. Clinger, Jr. (R-PA).
    Voice Vote: Yea.

    XI. CONGRESSIONAL ACCOUNTABILITY ACT; PUBLIC LAW 104-1; SECTION 
                               102(B)(3)

    H.R. 2202 as amended by the committee is inapplicable to 
the legislative branch because it does not relate to any terms 
or conditions of employment or access to public services or 
accommodations.

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                     Washington, DC, March 7, 1996.
Hon. William F. Clinger, Jr.,
Chairman, Committee on Government Reform and Oversight,
U.S. House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) 
has prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 2202, the 
Immigration in the National Interest Act of 1995, as amended by 
the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight on March 7, 
1996. The amendment strikes from H.R. 2202 sections 356 and 
523, which deal with federal employee retirement.
    Attached is a table summarizing the estimated spending and 
revenue effects of H.R. 2202, as amended. CBO estimates that 
striking sections 356 and 523 would increase net direct 
spending savings by $2 million to $4 million a year in 1997 
through 1999. These provisions would permit certain civilian 
and military retirees to collect their full pensions in 
addition to their salary if they are reemployed by the 
Department of Justice to help tackle a backlog of asylum 
applications or support the Institutional Hearing Program. A 
more detailed description of the provisions that were stricken 
is included in the CBO cost estimate sent to Chairman Henry J. 
Hyde of the House Committee on the Judiciary dated March 4, 
1996. That cost estimate also includes detail on the estimated 
budgetary impact of the other provisions of the bill. Striking 
sections 356 and 523 would not affect the cost of 
intergovernmental or private sector mandates in H.R. 2202.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. the CBO staff contact is Wayne 
Boyington.
            Sincerely,
                                           June E. O'Neill,
                                                          Director.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                              1996      1997      1998      1999      2000      2001      2002  
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                    SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATIONS ACTION                                   
Authorizations:                                                                                                 
    Estimated Authorizations Level........       129       699       774       856       960       978       996
    Estimated Outlays.....................         0       532       637       940       994       956       976
                                                                                                                
                                         MANDATORY SPENDING AND RECEIPTS                                        
Revenues:                                                                                                       
    New Criminal Fines and Forfeiture.....         0       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\
    Earned Income Tax Credit..............         0        14        13        12        13        13        13
      Change in Revenues..................         0        14        13        12        13        13        13
Direct Spending:                                                                                                
    New Criminal Fines and Forfeiture.....         0       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\
    Immigration Enforcement Account.......         0       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\       \1\
    Supplemental Security Income..........         0       -10       -80      -160      -260      -370      -670
    Food Stamps...........................         0         0       -15       -45      -100      -170      -250
    Family Support........................         0        -1       -13       -23       -48       -63       -78
    Medicaid..............................         0        -5      -110      -240      -390      -570      -830
    Earned Income Tax Credit..............         0      -216      -214      -218      -222      -224      -229
      Change in Direct Spending Outlays...         0      -232      -432      -686    -1,020    -1,397    -2,057
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
\1\ Less than $500,000.