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Patent Progress

February 1, 2000 szeller@njdc.com rom the beginning, Q. Todd Dickinson knew that replacing Bruce Lehman as Patent and Trademark Office commissioner wasn't going to be easy. Lehman, who headed PTO from 1993 to 1998, is widely credited with boosting the agency's profile, expanding its role in forming the Clinton administration's intellectual property policy,...

Congress overhauls patent office management

November 24, 1999 szeller@njdc.com After several years of often bitter negotiations, Congress has passed compromise legislation to reform the operations of the Patent and Trademark Office, making the office the second performance-based organization in the federal government. The bill, which passed the House in August by a vote of 376-43, was rolled into...

Highway agency caught in ID card debate

September 29, 1998 A diverse coalition that includes the American Civil Liberties Union, the Eagle Forum and other conservative groups, the National Conference of State Legislatures and a number of Hispanic organizations is lobbying against a new National Highway Traffic Safety Administration regulation that the groups say would create a national identity card....

Agency Alien Experts Wanted

November 24, 1997 Stephen G. Bassett is apparently spooking some people on Capitol Hill. The Bethesda (Md.)-based lobbyist and self-proclaimed specialist in the "alien hypothesis" wants congressional hearings featuring former government employees willing to testify on the government's knowledge of alien life and visitations to Earth. He is beginning to get some attention...

Patent Reinvention Stymied

October 29, 1997 When the Omnibus Patent Act was introduced in May 1996, it had the support of business, the Clinton Administration and congressional Republicans. They all liked the idea of turning the nation's 200-year-old Patent and Trademark Office into a government corporation, much like the Post Office, and bringing U.S. patent law...

Amtrak Faces Privatization

October 2, 1997 Amtrak is counting on Congress to keep the trains running. Tucked into the budget package that President Clinton signed in August was $2.3 billion for the financially troubled railroad. But Amtrak, which could face bankruptcy next year, has yet to see a penny, because the funding is contingent upon the...