USPTO estimates $2.322 billion in revenue for FY2011. FY2009 USPTO revenue was $1.901 billion and FY2010 revenue is projected at $2.003 billion.
The jump in expected revenue is largely based on a proposed 15% increase in user fees. According to the budget statements, the increase is “intended to be an interim measure.” However, I would not expect fees to drop again any time soon.
Justifying this increase, the administration indicates that it has set a “high priority goal” of reducing “patent pendency for first action and for final actions from the end of 2009 levels of 25.8 and 34.6 months respectively by the end of 2011, as well as the patent backlog.”
USPTO would also be given full access to its fee collections up-to $100 million over-budget.
USPTO would also be given authority for FY2011 to increase fees beyond the 15% at its discretion.
A Wall Street Journal article cites Commerce Department officials as indicating that the increased funding will allow the PTO to “reinstate overtime and hire 1,000 new examiners.” Director Kappos has also indicated that updates of the USPTO IT system is necessary. [Link]
The budget also estimates $36 million for the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.