Bipartisan Schneider-Fitzpatrick Amendment to Support Innovative Small Businesses Passes Committee

Amendment will help small businesses commercialize research

June 16, 2017

WASHINGTON, DC - A bipartisan amendment to help research-focused small businesses introduced by U.S. Representatives Brad Schneider (D-IL) and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA) was approved by the House Small Business Committee yesterday.

The amendment makes several changes to improve the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and the Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs, existing public-private partnership programs that help the United States meet its research and development needs. The Schneider-Fitzpatrick amendment helps small businesses participating in these programs commercialize their research by removing hurdles and streamlining the process.

Those improvements include:

  • increasing overall funding to help startups take their ideas from concept to commercialization;
  • creating more flexibility in funding guidelines for technical and business assistance grants; and
  • expanding the number of local vendors eligible to provide services to awardees.

“This amendment makes it easier for innovative small businesses to access the resources they need to bring their research to market,” said Schneider. “When our small businesses develop and grow, it advances not just technological innovation, but also boosts our economy and creates jobs. I was pleased to see my colleagues support this bipartisan amendment targeted at helping dynamic start-ups succeed.”

“I thank my colleague Congressman Schneider for co-leading this amendment with me,” said Fitzpatrick. “Our amendment recognizes the need to enhance and build upon existing success programs like SBIR and STTR to meet America’s needs. I thank the committee for their unanimous support in adopting this amendment and passing the this bill.”

The amendment is supported by the University City Science Center and the Larta Institute.

“The University City Science Center applauds the leadership of Congressmen Schneider and  Fitzpatrick on this important effort,” said Saul Behar, Vice President and General Counsel at the University City Science Center. “The SBIR program is an significant resource for entrepreneurs and the Schneider-Fitzpatrick amendment strengthens the program by providing greater access to necessary commercialization services that transition research to the marketplace.”

“The SBIR/STTR program is America’s Venture Fund,” said Rohit K. Shukla, CEO of the Larta Institute. “As such, it represents the public’s commitment to products and services impacting the quality of life for our people, and emerging from our undeniable leadership in the sciences. We applaud Congressmen Schneider and Fitzpatrick for leading the effort to include additional resources for awardees of this seminal program in the SBIR authorization bill, with a view to fostering and growing their commercialization efforts.”

The legislation to which the amendment was offered, the Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer Improvements Act of 2017, was introduced by Stephen Knight and (R-CA) and Stephanie Murphy (D-FL). The legislation unanimously passed through the House Small Business Committee.

The full amendment text is available here