Subchapter I Organization and Administration
Subchapter II Powers and Duties

Terms Used In U.S. Code > Title 2 > Chapter 29

  • account: means an item for which appropriations are made in any appropriation Act and, for items not provided for in appropriation Acts, such term means an item for which there is a designated budget account identification code number in the President's budget. See 10 USC 431
  • Adjourn: A motion to adjourn a legislative chamber or a committee, if passed, ends that day's session.
  • Adjournment sine die: The end of a legislative session "without day." These adjournments are used to indicate the final adjournment of an annual or the two-year session of legislature.
  • Advice and consent: Under the Constitution, presidential nominations for executive and judicial posts take effect only when confirmed by the Senate, and international treaties become effective only when the Senate approves them by a two-thirds vote.
  • Affidavit: A written statement of facts confirmed by the oath of the party making it, before a notary or officer having authority to administer oaths.
  • Affirmed: In the practice of the appellate courts, the decree or order is declared valid and will stand as rendered in the lower court.
  • Allegation: something that someone says happened.
  • Amendment: A proposal to alter the text of a pending bill or other measure by striking out some of it, by inserting new language, or both. Before an amendment becomes part of the measure, thelegislature must agree to it.
  • Annuity: A periodic (usually annual) payment of a fixed sum of money for either the life of the recipient or for a fixed number of years. A series of payments under a contract from an insurance company, a trust company, or an individual. Annuity payments are made at regular intervals over a period of more than one full year.
  • Appeal: A request made after a trial, asking another court (usually the court of appeals) to decide whether the trial was conducted properly. To make such a request is "to appeal" or "to take an appeal." One who appeals is called the appellant.
  • Appraisal: A determination of property value.
  • Appropriation: The provision of funds, through an annual appropriations act or a permanent law, for federal agencies to make payments out of the Treasury for specified purposes. The formal federal spending process consists of two sequential steps: authorization
  • Arrest: Taking physical custody of a person by lawful authority.
  • Assets: (1) The property comprising the estate of a deceased person, or (2) the property in a trust account.
  • association: when used in reference to a corporation, shall be deemed to embrace the words "successors and assigns of such company or association" in like manner as if these last-named words, or words of similar import, were expressed. See 19 USC 2295
  • Bail: Security given for the release of a criminal defendant or witness from legal custody (usually in the form of money) to secure his/her appearance on the day and time appointed.
  • Balanced budget: A budget in which receipts equal outlays.
  • baseline: means the projection (described in section 907 of this title) of current-year levels of new budget authority, outlays, receipts, and the surplus or deficit into the budget year and the outyears. See 10 USC 431
  • Beneficiary: A person who is entitled to receive the benefits or proceeds of a will, trust, insurance policy, retirement plan, annuity, or other contract. Source: OCC
  • Board: means the Board of Directors of the Office of Compliance. See 10 USC 454
  • breach: means , for any fiscal year, the amount (if any) by which new budget authority or outlays for that year (within a category of discretionary appropriations) is above that category's discretionary spending limit for new budget authority or outlays for that year, as the case may be. See 10 USC 431
  • Budget authority: Authority provided by law to enter into obligations that will result in outlays of Federal funds. Budget authority may be classified by the period of availability (one-year, multiyear, no-year), by the timing of congressional action (current or permanent), or by the manner of determining the amount available (definite or indefinite).
  • budget year: means , with respect to a session of Congress, the fiscal year of the Government that starts on October 1 of the calendar year in which that session begins. See 10 USC 431
  • budgetary resources: means new budget authority, unobligated balances, direct spending authority, and obligation limitations. See 10 USC 431
  • Calendar of Business: A Senate publication sent to each lawmaker's office (and other offices) every day the Senate is in session. It contains information on, for instance, measures reported from the various standing committees, bills in conference, and the status of appropriation bills.
  • category: means the subsets of discretionary appropriations in section 901(c) of this title. See 10 USC 431
  • Caucus: From the Algonquian Indian language, a caucus meant "to meet together." An informal organization of members of the legislature that exists to discuss issues of mutual concern and possibly to perform legislative research and policy planning for its members. There are regional, political or ideological, ethnic, and economic-based caucuses.
  • CBO: means the Director of the Congressional Budget Office. See 10 USC 431
  • Chair: means the Chair of the Board of Directors of the Office of Compliance. See 10 USC 454
  • Charity: An agency, institution, or organization in existence and operating for the benefit of an indefinite number of persons and conducted for educational, religious, scientific, medical, or other beneficent purposes.
  • Chief judge: The judge who has primary responsibility for the administration of a court but also decides cases; chief judges are determined by seniority.
  • Complaint: A written statement by the plaintiff stating the wrongs allegedly committed by the defendant.
  • Concurrent resolution: A legislative measure, designated "S. Con. Res." and numbered consecutively upon introduction, generally employed to address the sentiments of both chambers, to deal with issues or matters affecting both houses, such as a concurrent budget resolution, or to create a temporary joint committee. Concurrent resolutions are not submitted to the President/Governor and thus do not have the force of law.
  • Conference committee: A temporary, ad hoc panel composed of conferees from both chamber of a legislature which is formed for the purpose of reconciling differences in legislation that has passed both chambers. Conference committees are usually convened to resolve bicameral differences on major and controversial legislation.
  • Conference report: The compromise product negotiated by the conference committee. The "conference report" is submitted to each chamber for its consideration, such as approval or disapproval.
  • Congressional Record: The substantially verbatim account of daily proceedings in Congress. It is printed for each day Congress is in session. At the back of each daily issue is the "Daily Digest," which summarizes the day's floor and committee activities.
  • Continuance: Putting off of a hearing ot trial until a later time.
  • Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
  • Corporation: A legal entity owned by the holders of shares of stock that have been issued, and that can own, receive, and transfer property, and carry on business in its own name.
  • covered employee: means any employee of--

    (A) the House of Representatives. See 10 USC 454

  • current: means , with respect to OMB estimates included with a budget submission under section 1105(a) of title 31, the estimates consistent with the economic and technical assumptions underlying that budget and with respect to estimates made after that budget submission that are not included with it, estimates consistent with the economic and technical assumptions underlying the most recently submitted President's budget. See 10 USC 431
  • current year: means , with respect to a budget year, the fiscal year that immediately precedes that budget year. See 10 USC 431
  • Damages: Money paid by defendants to successful plaintiffs in civil cases to compensate the plaintiffs for their injuries.
  • Defendant: In a civil suit, the person complained against; in a criminal case, the person accused of the crime.
  • deposit insurance: refers to the expenses of the Federal deposit insurance agencies, and other Federal agencies supervising insured depository institutions, resulting from full funding of, and continuation of, the deposit insurance guarantee commitment in effect under current estimates. See 10 USC 431
  • direct spending: means --

    (A) budget authority provided by law other than appropriation Acts. See 10 USC 431

  • discretionary appropriations: means budgetary resources (except to fund direct-spending programs) provided in appropriation Acts. See 10 USC 431
  • Discretionary spending: Spending (budget authority and outlays)controlled in annual appropriations acts.
  • Docket: A log containing brief entries of court proceedings.
  • emergency: means a situation that--

    (A) requires new budget authority and outlays (or new budget authority and the outlays flowing therefrom) for the prevention or mitigation of, or response to, loss of life or property, or a threat to national security. See 10 USC 431

  • employee: includes an applicant for employment and a former employee. See 10 USC 454
  • employing office: means --

    (A) the personal office of a Member of the House of Representatives or of a Senator. See 10 USC 454

  • Entitlement: A Federal program or provision of law that requires payments to any person or unit of government that meets the eligibility criteria established by law. Entitlements constitute a binding obligation on the part of the Federal Government, and eligible recipients have legal recourse if the obligation is not fulfilled. Social Security and veterans' compensation and pensions are examples of entitlement programs.
  • Equitable: Pertaining to civil suits in "equity" rather than in "law." In English legal history, the courts of "law" could order the payment of damages and could afford no other remedy. See damages. A separate court of "equity" could order someone to do something or to cease to do something. See, e.g., injunction. In American jurisprudence, the federal courts have both legal and equitable power, but the distinction is still an important one. For example, a trial by jury is normally available in "law" cases but not in "equity" cases. Source: U.S. Courts
  • Evidence: Information presented in testimony or in documents that is used to persuade the fact finder (judge or jury) to decide the case for one side or the other.
  • Executive Calendar: A list of executive business (i.e., treaties and nominations) available for consideration.
  • Executive Director: means the Executive Director of the Office of Compliance. See 10 USC 454
  • Felony: A crime carrying a penalty of more than a year in prison.
  • Fiduciary: A trustee, executor, or administrator.
  • Fiscal year: The fiscal year is the accounting period for the government. For the federal government, this begins on October 1 and ends on September 30. The fiscal year is designated by the calendar year in which it ends; for example, fiscal year 2006 begins on October 1, 2005 and ends on September 30, 2006.
  • Forgery: The fraudulent signing or alteration of another's name to an instrument such as a deed, mortgage, or check. The intent of the forgery is to deceive or defraud. Source: OCC
  • Fraud: Intentional deception resulting in injury to another.
  • General Counsel: means the General Counsel of the Office of Compliance. See 10 USC 454
  • Germane: On the subject of the pending bill or other business; a strict standard of relevance.
  • Gift: A voluntary transfer or conveyance of property without consideration, or for less than full and adequate consideration based on fair market value.
  • individual: shall include every infant member of the species homo sapiens who is born alive at any stage of development. See 19 USC 2297
  • Injunction: An order of the court prohibiting (or compelling) the performance of a specific act to prevent irreparable damage or injury.
  • Interest rate: The amount paid by a borrower to a lender in exchange for the use of the lender's money for a certain period of time. Interest is paid on loans or on debt instruments, such as notes or bonds, either at regular intervals or as part of a lump sum payment when the issue matures. Source: OCC
  • Joint committee: Committees including membership from both houses of teh legislature. Joint committees are usually established with narrow jurisdictions and normally lack authority to report legislation.
  • Joint resolution: A legislative measure which requires the approval of both chambers.
  • Jurisdiction: (1) The legal authority of a court to hear and decide a case. Concurrent jurisdiction exists when two courts have simultaneous responsibility for the same case. (2) The geographic area over which the court has authority to decide cases.
  • Lease: A contract transferring the use of property or occupancy of land, space, structures, or equipment in consideration of a payment (e.g., rent). Source: OCC
  • Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
  • Majority leader: see Floor Leaders
  • Majority whip: See Whips.
  • Minority leader: See Floor Leaders
  • Minority whip: See Whips.
  • Mortgage: The written agreement pledging property to a creditor as collateral for a loan.
  • National Credit Union Administration: The federal regulatory agency that charters and supervises federal credit unions. (NCUA also administers the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund, which insures the deposits of federal credit unions.) Source: OCC
  • oath: includes affirmation, and "sworn" includes affirmed. See 19 USC 2291
  • Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
  • Office: means the Office of Compliance. See 10 USC 454
  • officer: includes any person authorized by law to perform the duties of the office. See 19 USC 2291
  • OMB: means the Director of the Office of Management and Budget. See 10 USC 431
  • Original bill: A bill which is drafted by a committee. It is introduced by the committee or subcommittee chairman after the committee votes to report it.
  • Outlays: Outlays are payments made (generally through the issuance of checks or disbursement of cash) to liquidate obligations. Outlays during a fiscal year may be for payment of obligations incurred in prior years or in the same year.
  • outyear: means a fiscal year one or more years after the budget year. See 10 USC 431
  • Oversight: Committee review of the activities of a Federal agency or program.
  • Parliamentarian: The Parliamentarian is an advisor on the interpretation of legislative rules and procedures.
  • Personal property: All property that is not real property.
  • Petit jury: A group of citizens who hear the evidence presented by both sides at trial and determine the facts in dispute. Federal criminal juries consist of 12 persons. Federal civil juries consist of six persons.
  • Point of order: A claim made by a legislator from the floor that a rule of the legislature is being violated. If the Chair sustains the point of order, the action in violation of the rule is not permitted.
  • Precedent: A court decision in an earlier case with facts and law similar to a dispute currently before a court. Precedent will ordinarily govern the decision of a later similar case, unless a party can show that it was wrongly decided or that it differed in some significant way.
  • President pro tempore: A constitutionally recognized officer of the Senate who presides over the chamber in the absence of the Vice President. The President Pro Tempore (or, "president for a time") is elected by the Senate and is, by custom, the Senator of the majority party with the longest record of continuous service.
  • Presiding officer: A majority-party Senator who presides over the Senate and is charged with maintaining order and decorum, recognizing Members to speak, and interpreting the Senate's rules, practices and precedents.
  • Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
  • Public law: A public bill or joint resolution that has passed both chambers and been enacted into law. Public laws have general applicability nationwide.
  • Quorum: The number of legislators that must be present to do business.
  • Ranking minority member: The highest ranking (and usually longest serving) minority member of a committee or subcommittee.
  • Real property: Land, and all immovable fixtures erected on, growing on, or affixed to the land.
  • Recess: A temporary interruption of the legislative business.
  • Reconciliation bill: A bill containing changes in law recommended pursuant to reconciliation instructions in a budget resolution. If the instructions pertain to only one committee in a chamber, that committee reports the reconciliation bill. If the instructions pertain to more than one committee, the Budget Committee reports an omnibus reconciliation bill, but it may not make substantive changes in the recommendations of the other committees.
  • Recourse: An arrangement in which a bank retains, in form or in substance, any credit risk directly or indirectly associated with an asset it has sold (in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles) that exceeds a pro rata share of the bank's claim on the asset. If a bank has no claim on an asset it has sold, then the retention of any credit risk is recourse. Source: FDIC
  • Reporter: Makes a record of court proceedings and prepares a transcript, and also publishes the court's opinions or decisions (in the courts of appeals).
  • Sequester: To separate. Sometimes juries are sequestered from outside influences during their deliberations.
  • sequestration: refer to or mean the cancellation of budgetary resources provided by discretionary appropriations or direct spending law. See 10 USC 431
  • Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
  • Statute: A law passed by a legislature.
  • Subpoena: A command to a witness to appear and give testimony.
  • subscription: includes a mark when the person making the same intended it as such. See 19 USC 2291
  • Summons: Another word for subpoena used by the criminal justice system.
  • Testify: Answer questions in court.
  • Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
  • Tort: A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person, as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident.
  • Trustee: A person or institution holding and administering property in trust.
  • Whips: Assistants to the floor leaders who are also elected by their party conferences. The Majority and Minority Whips (and their assistants) are responsible for mobilizing votes within their parties on major issues. In the absence of a party floor leader, the whip often serves as acting floor leader.
  • writing: includes printing and typewriting and reproductions of visual symbols by photographing, multigraphing, mimeographing, manifolding, or otherwise. See 19 USC 2291