Thursday, June 05, 2008

New Sanctions Bill Introduced: Surprise, surprise, surprise!

On June 4, Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL), Eric Cantor (R-VA), Thadeus McCotter (R-MI) and Mike Pence (R-IN) introduced H.R. 6178, new legislation “to strengthen existing legislation sanctioning persons aiding and facilitating nonproliferation activities by the governments of Iran, North Korea, and Syria, and for other purposes.” It is also called the STOP Act of 2008. The bill has been referred to the House Committees on Foreign Affairs, Ways and Means, the Judiciary, Oversight and Government Reform, and Financial Services.

Title III, Section 202 of H.R. 6178 would amend Section 7 of the “Iran, North Korea, and Syria Nonproliferation Act” (Public Law 106-178; 50 U.S.C. 1701) to prohibit the U.S. to enter into any agreement for nuclear cooperation with “the government of any country that is assisting the nuclear program of Iran, North Korea, or Syria or transferring advanced conventional weapons or missiles to Iran, North Korea, or Syria may be submitted to the President or to Congress pursuant to section 123 of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (42 U.S.C. 2153).” It would also amend Section 8 of the “Iran, North Korea, and Syria Nonproliferation Act” to direct the Secretary of State to deny a visa to, and require the Secretary of Homeland Security to exclude from the United States any foreign person who has been determined to have aided proliferation in those countries, including any corporate officer, principal, or shareholder with a controlling interest in an entity, parent or subsidiary company of foreign persons determined to have aided proliferation.

Title III, Section 302 of the bill would amend the Iran Sanctions Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-172; 50 U.S.C. 1701 note) to deny taxpayers engaged in business activity with Iran tax benefits. “Notwithstanding any other provision of this part, in the case of a taxpayer which is a member of an expanded affiliated group any member of which, on any day during the taxable year, engaged in business activity with Iran which is prohibited by United States law, no credit shall be allowed under subsection (a) to the taxpayer for any income, war profits, or excess profits taxes paid or accrued (or deemed paid under section 902 or 960) to any country if such taxes are with respect to income attributable to a period any part of which occurs during such taxable year.”

Section 304 of the bill would also establish a “Compensation for Former United States Hostages in Iran Fund” to “to pay claims to the United States citizens held hostage in Iran, and to members of the families of such United States citizens, who are identified as plaintiffs or class members in Case Number 1:00CV03110 (EGS) or Case Number 1:00CV00716 (HHK) in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia.”

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