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SIIA Statement on Biden EO Regarding Competition

The following statement is attributed to SIIA President Jeff Joseph regarding President Biden’s signing of the Promoting Competition in the American Economy Executive Order:

“While we appreciate and welcome the administration’s efforts to ensure U.S markets remain competitive and open to new entrants, SIIA joins the growing chorus of trade associations, private and public companies, and other entities in expressing our concerns about this Executive Order. Specifically, we are concerned elements of this order will have the unintended impact of undermining U.S. global leadership in technological innovation, stifle our nation’s competitiveness, and have ripple effects across business sectors in part by discouraging the investments needed to promote new services, products and businesses.

“We look forward to working with the administration to ensure this measure and its implementation allows for input from industry and other stakeholders as we pursue our shared goals or promoting competition, ensuring continued innovation and economic growth, and providing value and choice to consumers, customers, and investors.” 

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SIIA Response to the Supreme Court’s Decision in Arthrex

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SIIA CONTACT: Suzy Wagner, 703-899-3427

WASHINGTON, D.C. (June 23, 2021) – SIIA, the principal association for the software, information, and digital content industries issued the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s decision in Arthrex:.

SIIA President and CEO, Jeff Joseph statement:

“The AIA passed with overwhelming bipartisan recognition that the litigation of poor-quality patents are a drag on innovation, and that the agency should, in appropriate cases, take a second look at patents that it perhaps should not have granted. The AIA created such a system, and our members use it every day. For the Court to have thrown out the statute would have been devastating to our members, who would immediately have been deluged with dubious patent claims.”

About SIIA:
SIIA is the only professional organization connecting more than 700 data, financial information, education technology, specialized content and publishing, and health technology companies. Our
diverse members manage the global financial markets, develop software that solves today’s challenges through technology, provide critical information that helps inform global businesses large and small, and innovate for better health care and personal wellness outcomes – they drive innovation and growth. For more information, visit www.siia.net.

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Proposed American Families Plan’s Education Provisions

Last month, President Biden unveiled the American Families Plan, a proposal aimed at restructuring education, childcare, and paid family leave at the federal level. This proposal, the third in his series to Build Back Better, totals $1.8 trillion dollars and includes investments in education from the preschool to the post-secondary level. The plan addresses equity and access in education, a national teacher shortage, and increasing the use of best practices at universities and colleges to retain and graduate students. As of now, this remains a proposal and there is no information on when this might be turned into a bill, or if the proposed amounts will remain the same. 

 The proposed level of funding for education outlined is:

  • $200 billion for universal preschool
  • $109 billion for two free years of community college
  • $85 billion in additional Pell Grant funding
  • $46 billion for HBCUs, TCUs, and MSIs
  • $62 billion for college retention and graduation 
  • $9 billion for teacher development and diversification

This proposal comes after the passage of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act which sent $162 billion to support K-12 and higher ed pandemic related costs. A key difference in the funding allocated in the ARP and the proposed amounts in the American Families Plan are the areas they support. The ARP focuses on addressing the immediate impacts of lost in class instructional time and providing resources for K-12 schools to address the social-emotional well-being of students through summer enrichment programs and comprehensive after school programs. The American Families Plan on the other hand is a direct investment in improving the level of equity students will have access to from the earliest days of in class instruction up until some of their very last. 

 The AFP provides funds to community colleges in two general buckets: (1) money to provide two free years of education, and (2) money to focus on retaining students and improving the rates of graduation. The funds to help retention and graduation are available to all universities that serve low-income students; however, the plan places a strong emphasis on community colleges. 

 In addition to the two free years of community college, the AFP also dedicates funds to Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs), and other Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs). This $46 billion set aside is intended to close the gap in resources they have in comparison to other universities by subsidizing  tuition and expanding programs in high-demand fields.  

Teacher training will be a key area as teachers continue to build partnerships to create engaging and successful lessons for students, and learning to use and incorporate ed tech resources in classroom settings will be important for teacher development. The development portion is aimed at helping address the national shortage of teachers, which disproportionately impacts schools with higher percentages of students of color. The Administration has also expressed plans to encourage more diversity among new teachers through creating partnerships with university teacher programs, as well as providing existing teachers with access to mentoring and leadership programs, as well as certifications in areas such as special education, and bilingual education.

SIIA is encouraged by many of the education provisions in the American Families Plan. We have long supported robust state and federal investments in education. Recent relief packages have helped students of all ages continue to learn no matter where they are. As we look to a post-pandemic world, SIIA is hopeful policymakers will continue to support critical education initiatives like many included in the AFP and others, such as:

  •  Bolstering student access to high-quality online and digital learning experiences through providing funding for high-quality instructional materials, academic interventions, assessments, and other learning resources, such as professional development and supplemental instructional materials (digital and print).
  • Elevating social emotional learning and mental health resources for students, educators, and parents.
  • The continued expansion of connectivity and virtual capabilities to support digital learning as schools across the country look to support different learning models that have worked for students over the past year.
  • Policies to enhance STEM education for early learners to those looking to complete a credential to bolster their career.
  • Creating lifelong learning accounts by pairing educational funds with tuition reimbursement or other eligible aid so learners can pursue employer-sponsored, college-backed programs, industry-recognized credentials, or to allow employees to participate in apprenticeship and job training programs in the trades or other related opportunities. 

 

 

 

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SIIA Calls for a Restoration of Transatlantic Trust

For Immediate Release
SIIA Communications Contact: Kirsten Ballard, Marketing Director

SIIA Calls for a Restoration of Transatlantic Trust

WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 14, 2021) – Today, the Irish High Court issued its ruling on the process followed by the Irish Data Protection Commissioner (IDPC) regarding a provisional order with respect to data transfers by Facebook to the United States. As the IDPC moves forward with its process, we urge EU and US policymakers to forge a path for the restoration of trust on transatlantic data flows.

SIIA’s President and CEO, Jeff Joseph, notes: “The ruling today marks the next chapter for how the U.S. and EU can continue to work together as trusted partners and allies for the world’s largest trading relationship. Potential disruptions to the reasonable and secure flow of data, which is the indispensable circulatory system of healthy transatlantic commerce, serves no one. Not consumers. Not industry. Not our economies.

SIIA’s members rely on the power of data to fuel critical and necessary services, including those that prevent financial crimes and help our children and students to successfully transition to education from home. When this data involves a transatlantic transfer, our members are committed to following the rules and implementing reasonable and appropriate safeguards.

As the IDPC moves forward, we urge the European Commission and U.S. Government to negotiate and finalize a reasonable and clear resolution to the issues raised by the Schrems II ruling last July. Companies and consumers, in both the U.S. and the EU, are looking to our leaders to establish fair and lasting mechanisms that safeguard privacy while allowing innovation and critical services. Let’s tackle the problems ahead with a restored trust between our allied democracies and find a principles-based approach for our ever-evolving digital landscape.”

About Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA)
SIIA is the only professional organization connecting more than 700 data, financial information, education technology, specialized content and publishing, and health technology companies. Our diverse members manage the global financial markets, develop software that solves today’s challenges through technology, provide critical information that helps inform global businesses large and small, and innovate for better health care and personal wellness outcomes.

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SIIA Hails Markup of IDEA Act

This morning, the Senate Judiciary Committee moved S. 632, the Inventor Diversity for Economic Advancement (IDEA) Act out of Committee on a bipartisan basis.  The legislation would require the Patent and Trademark Office to amass and publish demographic information about patent applicants.  Jeff Joseph, President and CEO of SIIA, issued the following statement:

“SIIA supports the IDEA Act, and applauds the Committee’s action today. Recent events have drawn attention to systemic inequities in our society.  Good data is essential to determining to what extent those inequities are present in the patent system, and will give the PTO guidance on how to fix them. The IDEA Act requires the PTO to keep track of voluntarily disclosed patent applicant demographic information and publicly report it in the aggregate.  This kind of transparency will help evaluate and ensure that the incentives to innovate are available to everyone regardless of race, gender, or national origin.  We urge its swift enactment.”