International Trademark Association Says Bush USPTO Budget 'Cuts the Fiscal Legs Out from Under Agency and Its Customers'

President's FY 2002 Budget Siphons $207 Million in USPTO Fees



Apr 17, 2001, 01:00 ET from International Trademark Association

    NEW YORK, April 17 /PRNewswire/ -- The International Trademark Association
 (INTA), representing 4,000 trademark owners and practitioner law firms
 worldwide, expressed great concern today over a provision in the Bush
 Administration's FY 2002 budget that would siphon $207 million in badly needed
 funds away from the United States Patent Trademark Office (USPTO). The USPTO
 is one of the few federal agencies whose revenue is entirely fee-based and not
 dependent on taxpayer dollars. The Bush administration's proposed budget calls
 for a USPTO spending cap of $1.139 billion. However, the estimated customer
 generated fee revenue for the agency is $1.346 billion. The $207 million
 difference would be diverted to other government departments and/or programs.
     "The siphoning of these dollars will hinder the progress and the ability
 of the USPTO to review and approve trademark and patent applications in a
 timely and efficient manner," said INTA Executive Director Alan C. Drewsen.
 "With the USPTO receiving more applications than ever before, this is not the
 time to cut the fiscal legs out from under the agency and its customers."
 INTA believes strongly that the revenue collected for USPTO applications
 should be fully committed to enhancing the agency's performance and staffing
 needs.
     The Bush administration acknowledges that as a result of its proposed
 siphoning of USPTO funds, service to intellectual property owners will suffer.
 For example, the time that elapses between filing a trademark application and
 the initial examination will rise to an average 8 months from an estimated
 6.6 months in FY 2001 and 5.7 months in FY 2000. Even more substantial is that
 average pendency for trademark registration/disposal is estimated to be almost
 two years. The President's budget also projects a reduction in trademark and
 patent personnel and, not surprisingly, a drop in customer satisfaction.
     "INTA's leadership, membership and staff are committed to taking the fight
 to Congress in order to restore PTO funding in the FY 2002 federal budget,"
 added Mr. Drewsen. The association is now working with other IP organizations
 in a coordinated effort to deliver this message to Washington. INTA is also
 actively pursuing legislative solutions to the annual USPTO funding problem.
     Interested parties should contact Michael Heltzer, Government Relations
 Manager for INTA, at 212-768-9887, ext. 118.
 
     About INTA
     The International Trademark Association (INTA) is a 123 year-old
 not-for-profit association of trademark owners and practitioners worldwide.
 INTA's mission is to support and advance trademarks and related intellectual
 property concepts as essential elements of effective national and
 international commerce. INTA shapes public policy, advances practitioner's
 knowledge and educates business, the media and the public on the significance
 of trademarks. INTA's website is located at http://www.inta.org.
 
     (1) Trademark applications received:  FY 2000 actual = 375,428;
         FY 2001 est. = 450,000; FY 2002 est. = 540,000.  Patent applications
         received:  FY 2000 actual 293,244; FY 2001est. = 335,000;
         FY 2002 est. = 367,800.
 
     (2) Trademark personnel from 1,155 to 981 and patent personnel from
         6,350 to 5,823.
 
 

SOURCE International Trademark Association
    NEW YORK, April 17 /PRNewswire/ -- The International Trademark Association
 (INTA), representing 4,000 trademark owners and practitioner law firms
 worldwide, expressed great concern today over a provision in the Bush
 Administration's FY 2002 budget that would siphon $207 million in badly needed
 funds away from the United States Patent Trademark Office (USPTO). The USPTO
 is one of the few federal agencies whose revenue is entirely fee-based and not
 dependent on taxpayer dollars. The Bush administration's proposed budget calls
 for a USPTO spending cap of $1.139 billion. However, the estimated customer
 generated fee revenue for the agency is $1.346 billion. The $207 million
 difference would be diverted to other government departments and/or programs.
     "The siphoning of these dollars will hinder the progress and the ability
 of the USPTO to review and approve trademark and patent applications in a
 timely and efficient manner," said INTA Executive Director Alan C. Drewsen.
 "With the USPTO receiving more applications than ever before, this is not the
 time to cut the fiscal legs out from under the agency and its customers."
 INTA believes strongly that the revenue collected for USPTO applications
 should be fully committed to enhancing the agency's performance and staffing
 needs.
     The Bush administration acknowledges that as a result of its proposed
 siphoning of USPTO funds, service to intellectual property owners will suffer.
 For example, the time that elapses between filing a trademark application and
 the initial examination will rise to an average 8 months from an estimated
 6.6 months in FY 2001 and 5.7 months in FY 2000. Even more substantial is that
 average pendency for trademark registration/disposal is estimated to be almost
 two years. The President's budget also projects a reduction in trademark and
 patent personnel and, not surprisingly, a drop in customer satisfaction.
     "INTA's leadership, membership and staff are committed to taking the fight
 to Congress in order to restore PTO funding in the FY 2002 federal budget,"
 added Mr. Drewsen. The association is now working with other IP organizations
 in a coordinated effort to deliver this message to Washington. INTA is also
 actively pursuing legislative solutions to the annual USPTO funding problem.
     Interested parties should contact Michael Heltzer, Government Relations
 Manager for INTA, at 212-768-9887, ext. 118.
 
     About INTA
     The International Trademark Association (INTA) is a 123 year-old
 not-for-profit association of trademark owners and practitioners worldwide.
 INTA's mission is to support and advance trademarks and related intellectual
 property concepts as essential elements of effective national and
 international commerce. INTA shapes public policy, advances practitioner's
 knowledge and educates business, the media and the public on the significance
 of trademarks. INTA's website is located at http://www.inta.org.
 
     (1) Trademark applications received:  FY 2000 actual = 375,428;
         FY 2001 est. = 450,000; FY 2002 est. = 540,000.  Patent applications
         received:  FY 2000 actual 293,244; FY 2001est. = 335,000;
         FY 2002 est. = 367,800.
 
     (2) Trademark personnel from 1,155 to 981 and patent personnel from
         6,350 to 5,823.
 
 SOURCE  International Trademark Association