S. 559: Justice for Former American Hostages in Iran Act of 2013

113th Congress, 2013–2015. Text as of Sep 12, 2013 (Reported by Senate Committee).

Status & Summary | PDF | Source: GPO and Cato Institute Deepbills

II

Calendar No. 183

113th CONGRESS

1st Session

S. 559

[Report No. 113–104]

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

March 13, 2013

(for himself, Mr. Blumenthal, Mr. Heinrich, Mr. Coons, Mrs. Murray, Mr. Wicker, Mrs. Hagan, and Mr. Harkin) introduced the following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations

September 12, 2013

Reported by , with an amendment and an amendment to the title

Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert the part printed in italic

A BILL

To establish a fund to make payments to the Americans held hostage in Iran, and to members of their families, who are identified as members of the proposed class in case number 1:08–CV–00487 (EGS) of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, and for other purposes.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Justice for Former American Hostages in Iran Act of 2013 .

2.

American Hostages in Iran Compensation Fund

(a)

Establishment

There is established in the Treasury a fund, to be known as the American Hostages in Iran Compensation Fund (in this section referred to as the Fund) for the purposes of—

(1)

making payments to the Americans held hostage in Iran, and to members of their families, who are identified as members of the proposed class in case number 1:08–CV–00487 (EGS) of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia; and

(2)

satisfying the claims of the members of the proposed class against Iran relating to the alleged taking of hostages or treatment of personnel of the United States embassy in Tehran, Iran, between November 3, 1979, and January 20, 1981.

(b)

Funding

(1)

Imposition of surcharge

(A)

In general

There is imposed a surcharge equal to 30 percent of the amount of any fine or penalty imposed, in whole or in part, for a violation of a law or regulation specified in subparagraph (B) committed on or after the date of the enactment of this Act.

(B)

Laws and regulations specified

A law or regulation specified in this subparagraph is any law or regulation imposing a fine or penalty for any economic activity relating to Iran that is administered by the Department of State, the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Justice, the Department of Commerce, or the Department of Energy.

(C)

Termination of deposits

The imposition of the surcharge under subparagraph (A) shall terminate on the date on which all amounts described in subsection (c)(2) have been distributed to all recipients described in that subsection.

(2)

Deposits into Fund; availability of amounts

(A)

Deposits

The Secretary of the Treasury shall deposit in the Fund all surcharges collected pursuant to paragraph (1)(A).

(B)

Payment of surcharge to Secretary of the Treasury

A person upon which a surcharge is imposed under paragraph (1)(A) shall pay the surcharge to the Secretary without regard to whether the fine or penalty with respect to which the surcharge is imposed—

(i)

is paid directly to the Federal agency that administers the law or regulation pursuant to which the fine or penalty is imposed; or

(ii)

is deemed satisfied by a payment to another Federal agency.

(C)

Availability of amounts in Fund

Amounts in the Fund shall be available, without further appropriation, to make payments under subsection (c).

(c)

Distribution of funds

(1)

Administration of Fund

Payments from the Fund shall be administered, subject to oversight by the Secretary of the Treasury, by the named representatives of the proposed class described in subsection (a)(1) and an agent the members of the proposed class designate for the purpose of administering payments from the Fund.

(2)

Payments

Subject to paragraphs (3) and (4), payments shall be made from the Fund to the following recipients in the following amounts:

(A)

To each living former hostage identified as a member of the proposed class described in subsection (a)(1), $10,000 for each day of captivity of the former hostage.

(B)

To the estate of each deceased former hostage identified as a member of the proposed class described in subsection (a)(1), $10,000 for each day of captivity of the former hostage.

(C)

To each spouse or child of a former hostage identified as a member of the proposed class described in subsection (a)(1) if the spouse or child is identified as a member of that proposed class, $5,000 for each day of captivity of the former hostage.

(3)

Priority

Payments from the Fund shall be distributed under paragraph (2) in the following order:

(A)

First, to each living former hostage described in paragraph (2)(A).

(B)

Second, to the estate of each deceased former hostage described in paragraph (2)(B).

(C)

Third, to each spouse or child of a former hostage described in paragraph (2)(C).

(4)

Consent of recipient

A payment to a recipient from the Fund under paragraph (2) shall be made only after receiving the consent of the recipient.

(d)

Preclusion of future actions and release of claims

(1)

Preclusion of future actions

A recipient of a payment under subsection (c) may not file or maintain an action against Iran in any Federal or State court for any claim relating to the events described in subsection (a)(2).

(2)

Release of all claims

Upon the payment of all amounts described subsection (c)(2) to all recipients described in that subsection, all claims against Iran relating to the events described in subsection (a)(2) shall be deemed waived and forever released.

(e)

Deposit of remaining funds into the Treasury

(1)

In general

Any amounts remaining in the Fund after the date specified in paragraph (2) shall be deposited in the general fund of the Treasury.

(2)

Date specified

The date specified in this paragraph is the later of—

(A)

the date on which all amounts described in subsection (c)(2) have been made to all recipients described in that subsection; or

(B)

the date that is 5 years after the date of the enactment of this Act.

1.

Short title

This Act may be cited as the Justice for Former American Hostages in Iran Act of 2013 .

2.

American Hostages in Iran Compensation Fund

(a)

Establishment

There is established in the Treasury a fund, to be known as the American Hostages in Iran Compensation Fund (in this section referred to as the Fund ) for the purpose of making payments to the 52 Americans held hostage in the United States embassy in Tehran, Iran, between November 3, 1979, and January 20, 1981 (in this section referred to as the former hostages).

(b)

Funding

(1)

Imposition of surcharge

(A)

In general

There is imposed a surcharge equal to 30 percent of the amount of—

(i)

any fine or monetary penalty assessed, in whole or in part, on a person for a violation of a law or regulation specified in subparagraph (B) related to activities undertaken on or after the date of the enactment of this Act; or

(ii)

the monetary amount of a settlement entered into by a person with respect to a suspected violation of a law or regulation specified in subparagraph (B) related to activities undertaken on or after such date of enactment.

(B)

Laws and regulations specified

A law or regulation specified in this subparagraph is any law or regulation that provides for a civil or criminal fine or other monetary penalty for any economic activity relating to Iran that is administered by the Department of the Treasury, the Department of Justice, or the Department of Commerce.

(C)

Termination of deposits

The imposition of the surcharge under subparagraph (A) shall terminate on the date on which all amounts described in subsection (c)(2) have been distributed to all recipients described in that subsection.

(2)

Deposits into fund; availability of amounts

(A)

Deposits

All surcharges collected pursuant to paragraph (1)(A) shall be deposited into the Fund .

(B)

Payment of surcharge

A person on whom a surcharge is imposed under paragraph (1)(A) shall pay the surcharge to the Fund without regard to whether the fine, penalty, or settlement to which the surcharge applies—

(i)

is paid directly to the Federal agency that administers the relevant law or regulation specified in paragraph (1)(B); or

(ii)

is deemed satisfied by a payment to another Federal agency.

(C)

Contributions

The Secretary of State is authorized to accept such amounts as may be contributed by individuals, business concerns, foreign governments, or other entities for payments under this Act. Such amounts shall be deposited directly into the Fund .

(D)

Availability of amounts in fund

Amounts in the Fund shall be available, without further appropriation, to make payments under subsection (c) .

(c)

Distribution of funds

(1)

Administration of fund

Payments from the Fund shall be administered by the Secretary of State , pursuant to such rules and processes as the Secretary, in the Secretary's sole discretion, may establish.

(2)

Payments

Subject to paragraphs (3) and (4), payments shall be made from the Fund to the following recipients in the following amounts:

(A)

To each living former hostage, $150,000, plus $5,000 for each day of captivity of the former hostage.

(B)

To the estate of each deceased former hostage, $150,000, plus $5,000 for each day of captivity of the former hostage.

(3)

Priority

Payments from the Fund shall be distributed under paragraph (2) in the following order:

(A)

First, to each living former hostage described in paragraph (2)(A) .

(B)

Second, to the estate of each deceased former hostage described in paragraph (2)(B) .

(4)

Consent of recipient

A payment to a recipient from the Fund under paragraph (2) shall be made only after receiving the consent of the recipient .

(d)

Waiver

A recipient of a payment under subsection (c) shall waive and forever release all existing claims against Iran and the United States arising out of the events described in subsection (a).

(e)

Notification of claimants; limitation on review

(1)

Notification

The Secretary of State shall notify, in a reasonable manner, each individual qualified to receive a payment under subsection (c) of the status of the individual's claim for such a payment.

(2)

Submission of additional information

If the claim of an individual to receive a payment under subsection (c) is denied, or is approved for payment of less than the full amount of the claim, the individual shall be entitled to submit to the Secretary additional information with respect to the claim. Upon receipt and consideration of that information, the Secretary may affirm, modify, or revise the former action of the Secretary with respect to the claim.

(3)

Limitation on review

The actions of the Secretary in identifying qualifying claimants and in disbursing amounts from the Fund shall be final and conclusive on all questions of law and fact and shall not be subject to review by any other official, agency, or establishment of the United States or by any court by mandamus or otherwise.

(f)

Deposit of remaining funds into the Treasury

(1)

In general

Any amounts remaining in the Fund after the date specified in paragraph (2) shall be deposited in the general fund of the Treasury.

(2)

Date specified

The date specified in this paragraph is the later of—

(A)

the date on which all amounts described in subsection (c)(2) have been made to all recipients described in that subsection; or

(B)

the date that is 5 years after the date of the enactment of this Act.

(g)

Report to congress

Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, and annually thereafter until the date specified in subsection (f)(2), the Secretary of State shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report on the status of the Fund, including—

(1)

the amounts and sources of money deposited into the Fund;

(2)

the rules and processes established to administer the Fund; and

(3)

the distribution of payments from the Fund.

(h)

Definitions

In this section:

(1)

Appropriate congressional committees

The term appropriate congressional committees means—

(A)

the Committee on Foreign Relations and the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs of the Senate; and

(B)

the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Committee on Financial Services of the House of Representatives.

(2)

Person

The term person includes any individual or entity subject to the civil or criminal jurisdiction of the United States.

Amend the title so as to read: A bill to establish a fund to make payments to the Americans held hostage in Iran, and for other purposes..

September 12, 2013

Reported with an amendment and an amendment to the title