[Federal Register Volume 77, Number 87 (Friday, May 4, 2012)]
[Notices]
[Pages 26518-26519]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2012-10737]


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DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

United States Patent and Trademark Office

[Docket No. PTO-C-2012-0023]


Public Advisory Committees

AGENCY: United States Patent and Trademark Office, Commerce.

ACTION: Notice and request for nominations.

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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). The USPTO is requesting nominations for three (3) members 
to the Patent Public Advisory Committee, and two (2) members to the 
Trademark Public Advisory Committee, for terms of three years that 
begin on expiration of the predecessors' terms.

DATES: Nominations must be postmarked or electronically transmitted on 
or before June 11, 2012.

ADDRESSES: Persons wishing to submit nominations should send the 
nominee's resum[eacute] to John W. Cabeca, Senior Advisor, 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: PPACnominations@uspto.gov for the Patent Public 
Advisory Committee or TPACnominations@uspto.gov for the Trademark 
Patent Public Advisory Committee; by facsimile transmission marked to 
the Senior Advisor's attention at (571) 273-0464; or by mail marked to 
the Senior Advisor'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.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: John W. Cabeca, Senior Advisor, Office 
of the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and 
Director of the USPTO, by facsimile transmission marked to his 
attention at (571) 273-0464, or by mail marked to his 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.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: The Advisory Committees' duties include:
     Review and advise 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) 
Prepare an annual report on matters listed above; (2) transmit 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) 
publish the report in the Official Gazette of the USPTO.

Advisory Committees

    The Public Advisory Committees are each composed of nine (9) voting 
members who are appointed by the Secretary of Commerce (the 
``Secretary'') and serve at the pleasure of the Secretary for three 
(3)-year terms. 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 also includes three (3) non-voting members 
representing each labor organization recognized by the USPTO. 
Administration policy discourages the appointment of federally 
registered lobbyists to agency advisory boards and commissions 
(Lobbyists on Agency Boards and Commissions, http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2009/09/23/lobbyist-agency-boards-and- commissions (Sept. 23, 
2009, 2:33PM EST)); cf. Exec. Order No. 13490, 74 FR 4673 (January 21, 
2009) (while Executive Order 13490 does not specifically apply to 
federally registered lobbyists appointed by agency or department heads, 
it sets forth the Administration's general policy of decreasing the 
influence of special interests in the Federal Government).

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 beginning at 
the expiration of his or her predecessor's term. As required by the 
Act, members of the Patent and Trademark Public Advisory Committees 
will receive compensation for each day while the member is attending 
meetings or engaged in the business of that Advisory Committee. The 
enabling statute states that members are to be compensated at 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. Committee members are compensated on an hourly basis, calculated 
at the daily rate. While away from home or regular place of business, 
each member will be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu 
of subsistence, as authorized by Section 5703 of Title 5, United States 
Code. The USPTO will provide clerical and other support services for 
the Committees as the Director may determine to be necessary and 
proper.

Applicability of Certain Ethics Laws

    Members of each Public Advisory Committee shall be 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 any period of 365 consecutive 
days.
     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)).

[[Page 26519]]

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

Procedures for Submitting Nominations

    Submit resum[eacute]s for nomination for the Patent Public Advisory 
Committee and the Trademark Public Advisory Committee to: Senior 
Advisor to the Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property 
and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, 
utilizing the addresses provided above.

    Dated: April 30, 2012.
David J. Kappos,
Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of 
the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
[FR Doc. 2012-10737 Filed 5-3-12; 8:45 am]
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