H.R. 1425, The Creating Jobs Through Small Business Innovation Act of 2011
There is a very strong case for reauthorizing the SBIR and STTR programs. They have a proven track record of creating jobs, advancing innovative science to the marketplace, and solving federal agency problems. The legislative goal is to strengthen these programs to ensure efficient use of taxpayer dollars to help create more jobs by investing in the best science offered by small firms. Moreover, the bill does not authorize appropriations, but rather continues to set aside 2.5% of all federal extramural research dollars for small businesses to compete for.
Among other things, the bill would:
o Reauthorize the SBIR and STTR programs for three years;
o Encourage greater commercialization success by instituting commercialization initiatives at Federal agencies that administer SBIR programs;
o Increase Phase I and Phase II award sizes for both programs;
o Allow for greater participation of small companies regardless of their financial structure;
o Shorten the time frame between application and notice of award, and between notice of award and dispersal of funds;
o Codify in statue the programmatic flexibility that Federal agencies need in order to administer SBIR awards in a manner that is most consistent with the agency’s specific mission;
o Reduce the programs’ risk of waste, fraud, and abuse by requiring the SBA to develop additional prevention measures and by requiring the Inspector General of each participating agency to establish fraud detection measures and share best practices amongst themselves; and
o Permit agencies to use three percent of their SBIR and STTR budget for administrative, oversight, and contract processing costs.