SBIR/STTR Reauthorization, Part IV

To quote one of my favorite presidents: "Well, there you go again".  We all knew it would happen.   There is too much in the news about Afghanistan, Health Insurance Reform, the Recession, the Economy, etc. for Congress to pay attention to the SBIR reauthorization bill this month.   So they did what they have done so many times in the past, they extended the deadline!  This occurred in two separate legislations.  H.R. 2647, otherwise known as the” FY-2010 National Defense Conference Report”, was passed by both the House and Senate and signed by the President yesterday (10/28/09).    This included extension of funding of DoD SBIR/STTR’s until 9/30/10.  Originally this bill had language to extend the DoD program for 14 years but it was revised down to only one year prior to passage.   The other 10 SBIR agencies have to depend upon a new bill introduced in the Senate (S.1929) that extends the funding deadline for 6 more months to April 30, 2010.  This is to allow small businesses to get “thru the holiday season”.    The bill now goes to the House but approval is not guaranteed since the Small Biz Committee has been reluctant in the past to extend the SBIR program for any length of time.   What?  It all makes sense when you look back to the original expiration date of Sept. 30, 2008 and what has happened since then.  There are a number of politicians with individual agendas that are preventing the reauthorization of this important program.  Never mind that it affects over 29 million small businesses and that small businesses represent about half of all employment in the United States.  Judging by what is going on with Health Care Reform, it could be extended again next April.  Stay tuned…..


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