Letter of Transmittal and Preface




House of Representatives

Committee on Ways and Means

Washington, D.C.

December 2011


The Honorable Dave Camp

Chairman, Committee on Ways and Means

U.S. House of Representatives

Washington, D.C. 20515


Dear Chairman Camp:

Since 1981, the Committee on Ways and Means has published the Green Book, which presents background material and statistical data on the major entitlement programs and other activities within the Committee's jurisdiction.

The Green Book has become a valuable resource for Members of Congress, various legislative agencies, and executive departments, as well as scholars and citizens interested in government social programs. The 2011 Green Book is presented in a new web-based format, as explained in the Preface, and was prepared by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) under the direction of Committee staff.

The Committee staff who worked on this version of the Green Book want to call to your attention the following CRS analysts and information professionals who actively contributed to the project: Benjamin Collins, Patricia Davis, Gene Falk, Adrienne Fernandes-Alcantara, Katelin Isaacs, Karen Lynch, Umar Moulta-Ali, Janemarie Mulvey, Dawn Nuschler, Christine Scott, Alison Shelton, Gary Sidor, Carmen Solomon-Fears, Emilie Stoltzfus, Scott Szymendera, John Topoleski, Ruth Wasem, and Julie Whittaker. Sandra Edwards and Jamie Smith assisted in the formatting of CRS reports for this project. Karen Spar was the overall project coordinator for CRS.

In addition, I wish to call your attention to the work of the Subcommittee on Human Resources staff: Matt Weidinger, Staff Director, assisted by Ryan Martin, Anne DeCesaro, and David Vazquez, along with Ted Clark who has directed the Committee’s efforts to host and publish the Green Book online.

On behalf of all those who worked on this, the 20th edition, I am pleased to transmit the 2011 Green Book to you and other Members of the Committee on Ways and Means.


Jon Traub

Chief of Staff




After 19 previous editions, the Green Book has become a standard reference source on American social policy. It is widely used by Members of Congress and their staffs, analysts in congressional and administrative agencies, members of the media, scholars, and citizens interested in the Nation's social policy.

This edition of the Green Book follows a different pattern from previous editions. The 2011 Green Book is entirely web-based and its central feature is a selection of Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports made available for this purpose by the Committee on Ways and Means. Each chapter includes an introduction and overview, selected CRS reports, a set of tables and figures, a legislative history, and links to additional resources.

The Green Book is divided into two parts, Program Descriptions and Appendixes. In the Program Descriptions part, separate chapters are devoted to the major spending programs under the Committee’s jurisdiction: Social Security; Medicare; Supplemental Security Income; Unemployment Compensation; Earned Entitlements for Railroad Employees; Trade Adjustment Assistance; Temporary Assistance for Needy Families; Child Support Enforcement; Child Care; Social Services Block Grants; Child Welfare; and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation. Tax provisions are not included in the 2011 Green Book; however, readers are referred to the series of volumes entitled Tax Expenditures: Compendium of Background Material on Individual Provisions, prepared by the Congressional Research Service for the Senate Budget Committee and available on the Budget Committee’s website.

This edition of the Green Book also includes three appendixes that provide cross-program information. The appendixes provide information on Federal benefits and services for people with low income; social welfare programs in the U.S. territories; and Federal benefits for non-citizens.