Description: TO AGREE TO THE CONFERENCE REPORT ON S. 3168, FOREIGN RELATIONS AUTHORIZATION ACT, FISCAL YEAR 1977.
Bill summary: (Conference report filed in House, H. Rept. 94-1302)
Foreign Relations Authorization Act - =Title I: State Department= - Authorizes the appropriation to the Department of State of: (1) $552,455,000 for the administration of foreign affairs; (2) $342,460,453 for international organizations and conferences; (3) $17,069,000 for international commissions; (4) $68,500,000 for educational exchange; and (5) $10,000,000 for migration and refugee assistance for fiscal year 1977.
Secretary of State to use not more than $1,500 each fiscal year for the American Sections, International Joint Commissions, United States and Canada, for representation expenses and official entertainment.
Authorizes the appropriation of $20,000,000 for fiscal year 1977 for assistance to refugees of Russia, Israel, and other Communist countries of Eastern Europe, under the Foreign Relations Authorization Act of 1972.
Authorizes the appropriation for fiscal year 1977 of $1,000,000 for the miniaturization of United States Passport Office records.
Authorizes the appropriation for fiscal year 1977 of $50,000 for expenses incurred in hosting the 22nd annual meeting of the North Atlantic Assembly.
Makes available an ex gratia payment to Lady Catherine Helen Shaw as an expression of concern by the United States Government.
Amends the Foreign Services Buildings Act to authorize the appropriation of $73,058,000. Authorizes the appropriation of $30,000,000 for foreign service building expenses in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.
Authorizes the appropriation of $12,000,000 for expenses related to the Eighth Pan American Games.
Amends the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961 to permit Federal employees to accept certain grants and types of assistance from foreign governments.
Amends the Foreign Service Act of 1946 to permit the Secretary of State to make supplemental payments to any civil service annuitant who is a former alien employee of the Foreign Service to offset exchange rate losses.
Authorizes the President to maintain United States membership in the International Cotton Advisory Committee, the International Lead and Zinc Study Group, the International Rubber Study Group, and the International Seed Testing Association.
Requires that any new Panama Canal treaty negotiated with funds appropriated under this Act must protect the vital interests of the United States in the Canal Zone and in the operation, maintenance, property, and defense of the canal.
Provides for GAO audits of expenditures on gifts to foreign nationals involving funds from the "Emergencies in the Diplomatic and Consular Service" account.
Requires the Secretary of State to submit to Congress within 180 days of enactment a comprehensive plan for the improvement and simplification of the State Department/USIA personnel system.
Increases from $30,000 to $50,000 the ceiling on annual expenditures by each of two U.S. parliamentary delegations.
Amends the Foreign Service Act to specify civil actions and compensation as exclusive remedies for malpractice arising from medical care from personnel of the Department of State. Directs the Federal Government to defend any person to such action. Permits the Secretary of State to provide malpractice insurance to such personnel in specified circumstances precluding legal remedy.
Declares it to the sense of Congress that a greater number of U.S. ambassadorial positions should be occupied by career Foreign Service personnel.
Forbids State Department personnel to assist in the negotiation of a contract with a foreign country or company if such a contract discriminates against United States citizens on the basis of race, sex, religion, or national origin.
=Title II: United States Information Agency= - Authorizes the appropriation to the United States Information Agency for fiscal year 1977 of $255,925,000 for salaries and expenses, $4,841,000 for special international exhibitions, $2,142,000 for the acquisition and construction of radio facilities, and such additional amounts as may be necessary for employee benefits, under the United States Information and Educational Exchange Act of 1948, the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961, and Reorganization Plan Numbered 8 of 1953.
Amends the United States Information and Educational Exchange Act of 1948: (1) to authorize the purchase of uniforms under such Act; and (2) to authorize the use of exchange allowances for the exchange or sale of passenger motor vehicles without fiscal year limitation for replacement of an equal number of such vehicles.
Requires the Director of the United States Information Agency to make available to the Administrator of General Services, for deposit in the National Archives of the United States, a master copy of the films, "Echoes," "Sante Fe," "The Numbers Start With the River" "The Copland Portrait," "200," "Rendezvous," and "Century III--The Gift of Life." Directs the Administrator to distribute such films for public viewing.
Requires the Voice of America broadcasts to be governed by principles of accuracy and objectivity, representation of all segments of American society, and responsible discussion and opinion.
=Title III: Board for International Broadcasting= - Decreases from seven to six the number of members of the Board for International Broadcasting. Authorizes the appropriation of $58,385,000 to carry out the Board for International Broadcasting Act through fiscal year 1977. Specifies that $5,000,000 of such funds shall be available, as necessary, for downward fluctuations in foreign currency exchange rates.
=Title IV: Miscellaneous= - Amends the Japan-United States Friendship Act to change the formula upon which appropriations to the Japan-United States Friendship Trust Fund are based. Terminates the authority of the Japan-United States Friendship Commission to obtain administrative support services and personnel from the Secretary of State on a reimbursable basis.
Requires publication in the Congressional Record of foreign travel expenses of Members of Congress.
Directs the President to submit a report to the Congress, not later than January 31, 1977, which shall include the following: (1) recommendations outlining steps to be taken to more effectively utilize the transmission facilities for international broadcasting; (2) an examination of the feasibility of greater cooperation with foreign countries to insure mutally efficient use of nationally owned transmission facilities for international broadcasting; (3) an outline of projected needs for United States international broadcasting operations; and (4) recommendations concerning steps to be taken to extend broadcasting operations.
=Title V: Foreign Service Retirement= - Foreign Service Retirement Amendments - Provides that all Foreign Service staff officers and employees appointed by the Secretary of State or the Director of the United States Information Agency with unlimited appointments shall be entitled to the benefits of the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability System.
Revises the definitions of "annuitant," "surviving spouse," "child," "student," "military and naval service," and "Foreign Service normal cost" as they apply to provisions under the Retirement and Disability System.
Allows the President to make conforming changes in the Foreign Service Retirement System whenever there is a change in the provisions of the Civil Service Retirement and Disability System.
Provides that Government employees under other retirement systems may transfer contributions and deposits to the fund. Provides that computation of annuities shall be reduced by ten percent of any special contribution due for service for which no contributions were made. Sets forth revised provisions regarding payments of annuities to specified persons, including a surviving spouse, child and married annuitant.
Provides that the annuity of a participant shall commence on the day after separation from the service, or on the day after pay ceases. Makes specified changes in provisions relating to disability annuities and death-in-service annuities.
Provides that whenever a participant becomes separated from the service without becoming eligible for any annuity or a deferred annuity in accordance with the provisions of this Act, a lump-sum credit shall be paid to the participant. Sets forth the order of precedence for lump-sum payments to persons surviving the participant.
Defines what shall be considered creditable service for purposes of this title. States that a participant who enters on approved leave without pay to serve as a full-time officer or employee of a Government organization may file an election to receive full retirement credit for such period.
Requires the Secretary, at the end of each fiscal year, to notify the Secretary of the Treasury of the amount of the Foreign Service normal cost which was not met by specified contributions.
Provides an annuity adjustment for recall service by resuming former annuities at a rate adjusted by any cost-of-living increases that became effective during the recall period.
Prescribes revised procedures for voluntary contributions and cost-of-living adjustment.
Sets forth revised provisions regarding: (1) reappointment and recall; (2) retirement of foreign service officers who are career ambassadors; (3) participants in the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability System who are not career ambassadors; (4) selection-out-benefits; (5) separation for cause; (6) physical examinations under Universal Medical Program; and (7) conversion to Foreign Service retirement system.
Provides that all Foreign Service staff officers and employees with unlimited appointments who: (1) have been appointed by the Secretary of State or the Director of the United States Information Agency; and (2) are participants in the Civil Service Retirement and Disability System on the effective date of this Act, shall be transferred to the Foreign Service Retirement and Disability System effective on such date.
Provides for grants to specified widows and survivor annuity elections. Sets forth the effective dates for the provisions of this Act. Prescribes a retirement schedule for career ministers under the Foreign Service Act.
Click to hide full description.
Bill titles: An Act to authorize fiscal year 1977 appropriations for the Department of State, the United States Information Agency, and the Board for International Broadcasting, and for other purposes.; A bill to authorize fiscal year 1977 appropriations for the Department of State, the United States Information Agency, and the Board for International Broadcasting.
Original source documents: Digest of the Congressional Record vol. 122-103, p. H6969;
Links for more info on the vote: congress.gov