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Up for Debate This Week: National Service, Mental Health Coverage, and Consumer Product Safety

WASHINGTON, March 3 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- This is the federal legislative update for the week of March 3, 2008.

This week, the House will consider H.R. 2857, the Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education Act, which is also known as the "GIVE Act."

This bill would extend and reform the national service laws, which govern programs like AmeriCorps, the National Civilian Community Corps, and Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA). Passage of the legislation would cost a little less than $40 per U.S. family.

H.R. 2857

The Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education Act

Costs $36.98 per family

What People Think: 44% For, 56% Against

The House will also consider the Paul Wellstone Mental Health and Addiction Equity Act of 2007. The bill would prohibit group health plans and group health insurance issuers from treating mental health benefits and substance abuse treatment differently from medical and surgical benefits.

The precise bill to be considered is unclear, but one version of this legislation, H.R. 1424, would cost about $220 per U.S. family.

H.R. 1424

The Paul Wellstone Mental Health and Addiction Equity Act of 2007

Costs $220.92 per family

What People Think: 50% For, 50% Against

The Senate will consider S. 2663, a bill to reform the Consumer Product Safety Commission and amend the regulation of product safety various ways. Cost information for this legislation is not available.

S. 2663

A bill to reform the Consumer Product Safety Commission to provide greater

protection for children's products, to improve the screening of

noncompliant consumer products, to improve the effectiveness of consumer

product recall programs, and for other purposes

What People Think: 50% For, 50% Against

Displayed below are new, updated, and passed items with their cost or savings per family.

New Items

S. 1921

The Civil War Battlefield Preservation Act of 2007

Costs $0.36 per family

H.R. 5159

The Capitol Visitor Center Act of 2008

Costs $1.44 per family

H.R. 5351

The Renewable Energy and Energy Conservation Tax Act of 2008

Costs $24.44 per family

Updated Items

H.R. 1239

The National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom Reauthorization Act

of 2007

Costs $0.12 per family

Passed Items

P.L. 110-189

The Cameron Gulbransen Kids and Cars Safety Act of 2007

P.L. 110-190

The Airport and Airway Extension Act of 2008

P.L. 110-191

The Trade Preference Extension Act of 2008

Saves $1.21 per family

P.L. 110-192

To provide for the continued minting and issuance of certain $1 coins in


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