Patent Reform Bill Remains Stalled in Senate

The Senate has been unable to quickly vote on the House-passed version of Patent Reform, and it now looks increasingly likely that votes will have to be allowed on a couple of controversial amendments to the bill which could cause further problems. One of the House adopted amendments would recalculate the filing period for patent term extension… Read More


DREAM Act Hearing in Senate

Although immigration reform remains a controversial topic in an increasingly volatile political environment, yesterday the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees, and Border Security held a hearing on the Development, Relief, and Education for Minors (DREAM) Act of 2011 (S 952). Several hundred “dreamers” attended and Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, and… Read More


Department of Education releases Fiscal Year 2011 Grants Forecast

The document lists virtually all programs and competitions under which the Department of Education has invited or expects to invite applications for new awards and provides actual or estimated deadline dates for the transmittal of applications under these programs. The lists are in the form of charts — organized according to the Department’s principal program offices —… Read More


Spending Bills Update

The House this week passed the Military Construction-VA and the Agriculture Appropriations bills. While Military Construction-VA passed with little difficulty, the Agriculture bill passed with all Democrats and 19 Republicans opposing the measure. Many democrats have spoken out against the Agriculture bill because they are concerned that it contans deep cuts to programs that are vital… Read More


Supreme Court Decides Stanford v. Roche

The Supreme Court ruled in favor of a private pharmaceutical company in a heated patent rights battle (Stanford v. Roche). Last week’s decision complicates current university patents, as the majority of justices ruled that neither the government nor institutions that receive federal research grants are guaranteed automatic rights to patents that may arise from the research. In 2005, Stanford University… Read More


Shutdown Looms…

With current stopgap funding expiring tomorrow (Friday) night at midnight, negotiators are in a race against time to reach a deal on FY11 funding.  President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Reid, and House Speaker Boehner emerged from a late-night meeting at the White House Wednesday claiming serious progress, but nobody was ready to announce a deal… Read More


Debate Over Energy Bills, Policies Heats Up

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee held a hearing last week to assess hydrokinetic energy as an untapped resource with enormous potential opportunity. Bill S630 regarding Marine and Hydrokinetic Renewable Energy Promotion Act of 2011 was the primary focus of the hearing and if passed would secure funding for research and development of this… Read More


Senate Joins Earmark Moratorium

Yesterday, Senate Appropriations Chairman Daniel Inouye (D-HI) announced that the Senate will not advance earmark requests during the FY11 and FY12 appropriations cycles. The annoumcement follows decisions by the House of Representatives and President Obama to oppose the inclusion of special member projects in appropriations bills. Senator Inouye’s statement affirms his belief that Members of Congress should be able to direct… Read More


FY11 Appropriations Come to a Halt

Yesterday evening, Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) decided to pull the FY11 omnibus appropriations package from the Senate schedule.The move came after several committed “aye” votes decided that they could no longer support the legislation due to concerns about the overall cost and presence of earmarks. The next step in the FY11 process will… Read More