March 30, 2010 the SBA has published a Notice of Final Amendments to their Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR) Policy Directive. The Policy Directive provides the rules and guidance of the SBIR program to the agencies and participants. These new amendments are effective immediately and deal only with the SBIR and NOT STTR award amounts thresholds.
For the SBIR program the SBA has raised the award threshold amounts from $100,000 to $150,000 for Phase I, and $750,000 to $1,000,000 for phase II. This does not mean an agency MUST make awards that follow these parameters. (Agencies need to provide justification to SBA for awards in excess of the policy directive guidelines and explain the reasons for awarding higher amounts.)
At this time, it is unknown which agencies will immediately change their funding policies. As we already do know however, some agencies already make awards in excess of the limits – like NIH, and parts of DoD.
Rick Shindell has some background in the March 30th Issue of his SBIR Insider. Please see the following link for more information SBIR Gateway’s Insider page