Sunday, July 1, 2012

Report: Patent Office to open branch in Dallas-Fort Worth - WFAA

Associated Press

Posted on July 1, 2012 at 9:12 PM

Updated today at 9:12 PM

DENVER (AP) â€" The federal government was expected to announce Monday that  Dallas-Fort Worth, Denver,  and San Jose, Calif., will each receive a new U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

The new locations mark the first expansion of the suburban Virginia-based office, which has a backlog of 620,000 pending patents and gets 500,000 new applications each year, The Denver Post reported. Because of the heavy workload, it can take three years for the office to approve a patent.

Congress passed a law last year requiring that at least three new offices open in satellite locations around the country by 2014. One of those offices will be in Detroit, which the U.S. Commerce Department selected as a satellite office in 2010.

Monday's announcement by the Commerce Department will come after six years of aggressive lobbying from a number of Denver business leaders, lawyers and politicians, including Sen. Michael Bennet, former Gov. Bill Owens and Gov. John Hickenlooper.

Denver beat out applications from New Mexico, Utah, Nevada and Washington state, the Post reported.

A new office in metro Denver could bring hundreds of jobs to the area, Bennet said. An economic impact report prepared by Bennet's office and the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation predicted that the new satellite office could bring $440 million in economic activity over five years.

Federal officials selected Denver because of its relatively low cost of living and high quality of life, and because Colorado boasts an above-average population of "potential veteran employees," the Post reported, citing documents it obtained on Saturday.

The average patent examiner earns $81,000 annually, and the Patent Office was expected to employ â€" directly and indirectly â€" up to 1,000 people, the newspaper said.

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