Department of Agriculture (USDA) FOIA Requests

  • On October 9, 2009, KEI sent a request to the Department of Agriculture, regarding the Bayh Dole Act, with the following request:

    “In order to conduct our investigation and serve the public interest, KEI requests all documents, including email, letters, faxes and other communications, memorandums, power point presentations, and any other information which addresses the use, request to use or the possibility of using U.S. government rights in patents under provisions of the Bayh-Dole Act, including but not limited to possible or actual exercise of the right to a nonexclusive royalty-free license to use an invention, or the exercise March-in rights. This request also includes any cases where the agency has used or considered using the process laid out in the Commerce Regulations 37 C.F.R. 401 to resolve a dispute about the use of the invention. The time period of our request dates from 12 December 1980 to the present.”

    On November 23, 2009, KEI received an email by which DoA informed us that the Office of Planning and Accountability, NIFA personnel search their files and “although NIFA has never contemplated exercising the ownership and/or march-in rights provided under Bayh-Dole, they have discussed the possibility as part of informing grantees about Bayh-Dole. The attached six documents maintained by NIFA are being provided that may be relevant to your request”. The documents DoA sent were basically training materials on the use of Bayh Dole Act. The DoA email also mentioned that the Office of Technology Transfer, ARS personnel “searched their files, but did not locate any documents responsive to the request”.