Support Patent and Trademark Fee Modernization Act of 2003
July 8, 2003
The Honorable James F. Sensenbrenner, Jr.
Chairman, House Judiciary Committee
2138 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515-6216
Dear Mr. Chairman:
The United States Chamber of Commerce, the world's largest business federation,
representing more than three million businesses and organizations of every size, sector and region, supports H.R. 1561, the United States Patent and Trademark Fee Modernization Act of 2003. This legislation would increase application fees for new patents and trademarks in order to implement much needed reforms at the Patent and Trademark Office (PTO).
Intellectual property (IP) assets may represent as much as 70 percent of the market value
of a typical U.S. company and IP-based enterprises represent almost five percent of the Gross
Domestic Product. To better serve these companies, PTO has presented its 21st Century Strategic Plan, which seeks to enhance the quality of patent and trademark operations, control patent and trademark pendency, and implement e-government solutions. Industry strongly supports these initiatives.
Of specific interest to business is the provision in this bill eliminating the diversion of
fees from PTO to unrelated programs. The private sector has long signaled its willingness to
bear the financial burden of reforming PTO, but only if these additional revenues are earmarked
for that purpose. An increase in fees, without the full implementation of reforms, would severely
undermine the innovation and efficiency of American industry.
The Chamber urges the Committee to support this legislation and oppose any
amendments that would restore the practice of diverting funds from PTO.
R. Bruce Josten
cc: Ranking Member, John Conyers, Jr., House Judiciary Committee
Members, House Judiciary Committee