[Federal Register Volume 74, Number 52 (Thursday, March 19, 2009)]
[Notices]
[Pages 11718-11719]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E9-5844]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

United States Patent and Trademark Office

[PTO-C-2009-0009]


Public Advisory Committees

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office.

ACTION: Notice and request for nominations for Public Advisory 
Committees.

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SUMMARY: On November 29, 1999, the President signed into law the Patent 
and Trademark Office Efficiency Act (the ``Act''), Public Law 106-113, 
which, among other things, established two Public Advisory Committees 
to review the policies, goals, performance, budget and user fees of the 
United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) with respect to 
patents, in the case of the Patent Public Advisory Committee, and with 
respect to trademarks, in the case of the Trademark Public Advisory 
Committee, and to advise the Director on these matters (now codified at 
35 U.S.C. 5). Due to the expiration of current members' terms, the 
USPTO is requesting nominations for three (3) members to the Patent 
Public Advisory Committee (PPAC) and two (2) members to the Trademark 
Public Advisory Committee (TPAC) for terms of three years that begin 
from date of appointment.

DATES: Nominations must be postmarked or electronically transmitted on 
or before May 15, 2009.

ADDRESSES: Persons wishing to submit nominations should send the 
nominee's resum[eacute] to Chief of Staff, Office of the Under 
Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the 
USPTO, Post Office Box 1450, Alexandria, Virginia 22313-1450; by 
electronic mail to: [email protected] for the Patent Public 
Advisory Committee or [email protected] for the Trademark 
Patent Public Advisory Committee; by facsimile transmission marked to 
the Chief of Staff's attention at (571) 273-0464, or by mail marked to 
the Chief of Staff's attention and addressed to the Office of the Under 
Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the 
USPTO, Post Office, Box 1450, Alexandria, Virginia 22313-1450. Self-
nominations are perfectly acceptable.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Eleanor K. Meltzer, Chief of Staff, by 
facsimile transmission marked to her attention at (571) 273-0464, by 
mail marked to her attention and addressed to the Office of the Under 
Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the 
USPTO, Post Office Box 1450, Alexandria, Virginia 22313-1450, or by 
telephone at: (571) 272-7660.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Advisory Committees' duties include:
     Advising the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual 
Property and Director of the USPTO on matters relating to policies, 
goals, performance, budget, and user fees of the USPTO relating to 
patents and trademarks, respectively; and
     Within 60 days after the end of each fiscal year: (1) 
Preparing an annual report on matters listed above; (2) transmitting a 
report to the Secretary of Commerce, the President, and the Committees 
on the Judiciary of the Senate and the House of Representatives; and 
(3) publishing the report in the Official Gazette of the USPTO.
    Members of the Patent and Trademark Public Advisory Committees are 
appointed by and serve at the pleasure of the Secretary of Commerce for 
three (3)-year terms.

Advisory Committees

    The Public Advisory Committees are each composed of nine (9) voting 
members who are appointed by the Secretary of Commerce (the 
``Secretary''). The Public Advisory Committee members must be United 
States citizens and represent the interests of diverse users of the 
USPTO, both large and small entity applicants in proportion to the 
number of such applications filed. The Committees must include members 
who have ``substantial backgrounds and achievement in finance, 
management, labor relations, science, technology, and office 
automation.'' 35 U.S.C. 5(b)(3). In the case of the Patent Public 
Advisory Committee, at least twenty-five (25) percent of the members 
must represent ``small business concerns, independent inventors, and 
nonprofit organizations,'' and at least one member must represent the 
independent inventor community. 35 U.S.C. 5(b)(2). Each of the Public 
Advisory Committees includes three (3) non-voting members representing 
each of the labor organizations recognized by the USPTO.

Procedures and Guidelines of the Patent and Trademark Public Advisory 
Committees

    Each newly appointed member of the Patent and Trademark Public 
Advisory Committees will serve for a term of three years from date of 
appointment. As required by the Act, members of the Patent and 
Trademark Public Advisory Committees receive compensation for each day 
they attend meetings or are engaged in the business of that Advisory 
Committee.
    The rate of compensation is the daily equivalent of the annual rate 
of basic pay in effect for level III of the Executive Schedule under 
section 5314 of title 5, United States Code. While away from their home 
or regular place of business, members are allowed travel expenses, 
including per diem in lieu of subsistence, as authorized by Section 
5703 of title 5, United States Code. The USPTO provides the necessary 
administrative support, including technical assistance, for the 
Committees.

[[Page 11719]]

Applicability of Certain Ethics Laws

    Members of each Public Advisory Committee are considered Special 
Government Employees within the meaning of Section 202 of title 18, 
United States Code. The following additional information includes 
several, but not all, of the ethics rules that apply to members, and 
assumes that members are not engaged in Public Advisory Committee 
business more than sixty days during each calendar year:
     Each member will be required to file a confidential 
financial disclosure form within thirty (30) days of appointment. 5 CFR 
2634.202(c), 2634.204, 2634.903, and 2634.904(b).
     Each member will be subject to many of the public 
integrity laws, including criminal bars against representing a party, 
18 U.S.C. 205(c), in a particular matter that came before the member's 
committee and that involved at least one specific party. See also 18 
U.S.C. 207 for post-membership bars. A member also must not act on a 
matter in which the member (or any of certain closely related entities) 
has a financial interest. 18 U.S.C. 208.
     Representation of foreign interests may also raise issues. 
35 U.S.C. 5(a)(1) and 18 U.S.C. 219.

Meetings of the Patent and Trademark Public Advisory Committees

    Meetings of each Advisory Committee take place at the call of the 
Chair to consider an agenda set by the Chair. Meetings may be conducted 
in person, electronically through the Internet, or by other appropriate 
means. The meetings of each Advisory Committee are open to the public 
except that each Advisory Committee may, by majority vote, meet in 
executive session when considering personnel, privileged, or other 
confidential matters. Nominees must have the ability to participate in 
Committee business via the Internet.

Procedures for Submitting Nominations

    Please submit resum[eacute]s for nominations for the Patent Public 
Advisory Committee and the Trademark Public Advisory Committee to: 
Chief of Staff to the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual 
Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, 
using the addresses provided above.

    Dated: March 12, 2009.
John J. Doll,
Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Acting 
Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
 [FR Doc. E9-5844 Filed 3-18-09; 8:45 am]
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