B Statement of Task and Enabling Legislation

Statement of Task

The following statement of task is reprinted from the contract between the Department of the Treasury's Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and the National Research Council.

The study required by this SOW [statement of work] should focus on matters of science and technology, with the goal of furnishing a report that provides a clear description of the technical issues that exist. The report should provide information that will facilitate decisions by the Secretary of the Treasury for recommendations to Congress.

TASK 1. Adding Tracer elements to black powder and smokeless powder for detection. The purpose of this task is to explore and define methods, materials and technologies that are available today, as well as those currently in research and development, that might be used to enhance the detectability of black powder or smokeless powder. In conducting this work step, the contractor shall determine whether:

SUBTASK 1.1. Tracer elements identified as candidates for use as detection agents will pose a risk to human life or safety.

SUBTASK 1.2. Tracer elements identified as candidates for use as detection agents will substantially assist law enforcement officers in their investigative efforts.



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--> B Statement of Task and Enabling Legislation Statement of Task The following statement of task is reprinted from the contract between the Department of the Treasury's Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms and the National Research Council. The study required by this SOW [statement of work] should focus on matters of science and technology, with the goal of furnishing a report that provides a clear description of the technical issues that exist. The report should provide information that will facilitate decisions by the Secretary of the Treasury for recommendations to Congress. TASK 1. Adding Tracer elements to black powder and smokeless powder for detection. The purpose of this task is to explore and define methods, materials and technologies that are available today, as well as those currently in research and development, that might be used to enhance the detectability of black powder or smokeless powder. In conducting this work step, the contractor shall determine whether: SUBTASK 1.1. Tracer elements identified as candidates for use as detection agents will pose a risk to human life or safety. SUBTASK 1.2. Tracer elements identified as candidates for use as detection agents will substantially assist law enforcement officers in their investigative efforts.

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--> SUBTASK 1.3. Tracer elements identified as candidates for use as detection agents will substantially impair the quality and performance of the powders (which shall include a broad and comprehensive sampling of all available powders) for their intended lawful use, including but not limited to the sporting, defense, and hand loading uses of powders, as well as their use in display and lawful consumer pyrotechnics. At least three organizations that are capable of conducting testing to validate the study findings shall be identified. SUBTASK 1.4. Tracer elements identified as candidates for inclusion as detection agents will have a substantial adverse effect on the environment. SUBTASK 1.5. The addition of materials as tracer elements will incur costs which outweigh the benefits of their inclusion, including an evaluation of the probable production and regulatory cost of compliance to the industry and the costs and effects on consumers, including the effect on the demand for ammunition. SUBTASK 1.6. Tracer elements identified as candidates for inclusion can be evaded, and with what degree of difficulty, by terrorists or terrorist organizations, including evading tracer elements by the use of precursor chemicals to make black powder or smokeless powder. TASK 2. Adding Tracer elements to black powder or smokeless powder for identification. The purpose of this task is to explore and define methods, materials and technologies that are available today, as well as those currently in research and development, that might be used to identify the point of origination of black powder or smokeless powder. In conducting this work step, determine whether: SUBTASK 2.1. Tracer elements identified as candidates for inclusion as identification agents will pose a risk to human life or safety. SUBTASK 2.2. Tracer elements identified as candidates for inclusion as identification agents will substantially assist law enforcement officers in their investigative efforts. SUBTASK 2.3. Tracer elements identified as candidates for inclusion as identification agents will substantially impair the quality and performance of the powders (which shall include a broad and comprehensive sampling of all available powders) for their intended lawful use, includ-

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--> ing but not limited to the sporting, defense, and hand loading uses of powders, as well as their use in display and lawful consumer pyrotechnics. At least three organizations that are capable of conducting testing to validate the study findings shall be identified. SUBTASK 2.4. Tracer elements identified as candidates for inclusion as identification agents will have a substantial adverse effect on the environment. SUBTASK 2.5. The addition of materials as tracer elements will incur costs which outweigh the benefits of their inclusion, including an evaluation of the probable production and regulatory cost of compliance to the industry and the cost and effects on consumers, including the effect on the demand for ammunition. SUBTASK 2.6. Tracer elements identified as candidates for inclusion can be evaded, and with what degree of difficulty, by terrorists or terrorist organizations, including evading tracer elements by the use of precursor chemicals to make black powder or smokeless powder. Enabling Legislation In August 1996, the National Research Council contracted with the Treasury Department to carry out a study on the marking, rendering inert, and licensing of explosive materials. This study resulted directly from language in the Antiterrorism Act of 1996 (Public Law 104–132, Section 732). Smokeless and black powder were explicitly excluded from the study by subsection (a)(2) of the law. In September 1996, the law was amended by the addition of a new subsection as follows: (f) SPECIAL STUDY.— (1)   IN GENERAL.—Notwithstanding subsection (a), the Secretary of the Treasury shall enter into a contract with the National Academy of Sciences (referred to in this section as the "Academy") to conduct a study of the tagging of smokeless and black powder by any viable technology for purposes of detection and identification. The study shall be conducted by an independent panel of 5 experts appointed by the Academy. (2)   STUDY ELEMENTS.—The study conducted under this subsection shall

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--> (A)   indicate whether the tracer elements, when added to smokeless and black powder (i)   will pose a risk to human life or safety; (ii)   will substantially assist law enforcement officers in their investigative efforts; (iii)   will impair the quality and performance of the powders (which shall include a broad and comprehensive sampling of all available powders) for their intended lawful use, including, but not limited to the sporting, defense, and hand loading uses of the powders, as well as their use in display and lawful consumer pyrotechnics; (iv)   will have a substantially adverse effect on the environment; (v)   will incur costs which outweigh the benefits of their inclusion, including an evaluation of the probable production and regulatory cost of compliance to the industry, and the costs and effects on consumers, including the effect on the demand for ammunition; and (vi)   can be evaded, and with what degree of difficulty, by terrorists or terrorist organizations, including evading tracer elements by the use of precursor chemicals to make black or other powders; and (B)   provide for consultation on the study with Federal, State, and local officials, non-governmental organizations, including all national police organizations, national sporting organizations, and national industry associations with expertise in this area and such other individuals as shall be deemed necessary. (3)   REPORT AND COSTS.-The study conducted under this subsection shall be presented to Congress 12 months after the enactment of this subsection and be made available to the public, including any data tapes or data used to form such recommendations. There are authorized to be appropriated such sums as may be necessary to carry out the study. In October 1997, PL 105–61 111 Stat. 1272 extended the due date for the report as follows:

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--> Provided, That section 113(2) of the Fiscal Year 1997 Department of Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, Public Law 104–208 (110 Stat. 3009-22) is amended by striking "12 months" and inserting in lieu thereof "2 years."