87th Arizona Town Hall
Maximizing Arizona's Opportunities in the Biosciences and Biotechnology
Oct. 30 – Nov. 2, 2005

The 87th Arizona Town Hall looked at what Arizona needs to do in order to play a leading role in the worldwide effort to advance healthcare and to improve the quality of life for all Arizonans through economic development focused on the biosciences and biotechnology. Arizona should receive a tremendous return on its investment if the state is successful in building world-class bioscience and biotechnology centers of excellence.

  • A critical step for Arizona is the articulation of a vision for a strong bioscience and biotechnology industry and obtaining the leadership and commitment to implement that vision with a sense of urgency.
  • Building the University of Arizona's expanded campus of the medical college in downtown Phoenix promises immense opportunity for all of Arizona. The expanded campus would create additional opportunities for enhanced collaborative teaching and research efforts with area hospitals, A.S.U., TGen and others.
  • Town Hall recommends that the Arizona Legislature refer to the voters in 2006 a change to Arizona's Constitution to allow the state to acquire stock in a private company in payment for transferring an interest in technology and intellectual property created or acquired by the State Board of Regents, Arizona's universities or the Arizona Biomedical Research Commission.
  • Funding for bioscience and biotechnology must be addressed. Tax incentives linked to bioscience and biotechnology opportunity benefits, public/private ownership, venture capital, bonds and angel funds all should be tapped to provide necessary pre-seed and seed money.
  • Arizona also must build on recent investments in public education to create an aligned, clearly articulated and integrated education system from early childhood education through pre-kindergarten, K-12, community colleges and universities to establish a talent pool that will be necessary and to attract and keep the businesses and families that will be necessary to sustain Arizona's economic future.
  • Arizona has a substantial skilled bioscience and biotechnology workforce but needs to build greater capacity for the 21st century bioscience and biotechnology economy. …Increased communication and partnerships with private sector businesses will be necessary to develop innovative programs to retrain the workforce as needed.

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