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RELEASE: What Others Are Saying About the Golden State Innovation Act

Investing in Life Sciences is an Investment in CA’s Future

For immediate release:

SACRAMENTO – At a virtual press conference, Assemblymembers Cottie Petrie-Norris, Tom Daly, Kevin Mullin and Jacqui Irwin unveiled coalition support and legislative details of the Golden State Innovation Act. Assembly Bill 593 will restore the Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit and Net Operating Loss (NOL) deductions for Life Sciences companies in California, at a pivotal point in the state’s pandemic response and recovery.
“The same companies that are producing critical scientific breakthroughs to help us defeat this pandemic are the ones that are being hurt by the last year’s budget cuts,” said Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach). “These incentives fuel innovation, create good jobs and support the development of life-saving therapies.”
Life Sciences Companies:
“The California life sciences ecosystem works like a cycle - academic research develops innovative new ways to tackle disease and other problems while producing well-trained PhDs to carry that work forward. Seeing promise in their research, venture capitalists invest in young companies, and the most successful of these companies grow to become industry leaders in their fields. In 2019, VCs alone invested $6.5 billion into California life sciences businesses, once again leading the nation.  With these resources and the additional billions of dollars directly invested by larger companies on R&D in California, the life sciences continue to develop innovative ideas into products: medicines and devices to resolve unmet medical needs, as well as genomic sequencing applications and other diagnostic tests to diagnose health problems and advance personalized medicine,” said Mike Guerra, President and CEO, California Life Sciences Association. 
“Biopharmaceutical companies are leading the charge in the fight against the coronavirus.  These innovators are making life saving discoveries through research and development, including for treatments and vaccines for COVID-19 and future pandemics.  California’s research and development tax credit helps incentivize biotechnology companies to invest in these activities and generate increased employment opportunities in science and engineering,” said Patrick J. Plues, Vice President, State Government Affairs, Biotechnology Innovation Organization.
“The success of California’s life sciences ecosystem is built on sound, supportive practices that help medical technology companies like ours grow and thrive. Edwards Lifesciences was founded in 1958, and for more than 60 years, our spirit of innovation focused on helping patients has driven us forward.  It is this shared commitment to investing in education, developing thoughtful public policy and supporting research and development that has produced tremendous benefits for California, its life sciences companies and patients. These are the ideals that fuel innovation, and we look forward to continuing them for decades to come,” said Dirksen Lehman, Corporate Vice President, Public Affairs, Edwards Lifesciences. 
“We have seen strong spending towards innovative technologies and platforms such as gene and cell therapies pursuing diseases in oncology, CNS, and rare diseases.  We have also observed COVID as a contributor to growth, despite some slowdown within parts of the sector, and COVID-19 almost becoming a new disease category in its own right with its own therapeutics and vaccines.  Continued investment is the lifeblood of this sector and the foundation for early-stage research,” said David Crean, Managing Director, Objective Capital Partners.
“Encouraging innovation and investment in California’s innovative capacities through government and industry working together is the best way to grow research jobs in California.  As a company spun out of UC Davis, we are now the global leader in inhaled anesthetic innovation with the objective of revolutionizing modern surgery,” said Mark Holman, Chairman, Expanesthetics, Inc.
“COVID-19 is the perfect storm of a healthcare crisis, which led to an economic crisis, which has been amplified by social crisis. California has much to gain as it innovates out of these crises, providing new opportunities locally, across the country, and around the world. In order to remain competitive and maximize return on investment, it is critical that we remove financial barriers to innovation,” said David J. Whelan, CEO, Bioscience LA. 
“The California ecosystem is incredibly productive. In 2019, California companies entered more than 1,380 medicines into clinical trials. Many are intended to treat cancer, neurodegenerative conditions, infectious diseases, and numerous other serious conditions where patients have major unmet medical needs. 2020 will of course be marked by the rapid search for, and application of, treatments and cures for COVID-19 related complications.  All of this starts with Research and Development activities,” said Dr. Le Ondra Clark Harvey, Executive Director, California Access Coalition. 
“California-based companies have long been pioneers in research and development in biotechnology, helping the state become one of the largest biopharmaceutical innovation hubs in the world. Today, other states are taking steps to become more competitive and attract the sector’s highly sought-after research and development jobs. California must act to provide tax stability to California-based companies if the state is to maintain its historical leadership status in the sector,” said Jackie Crouse, Vice President of Tax, Amgen. 
“Biomedical research requires the input and participation of many individuals from both the life and physical sciences, with many different backgrounds and skills. Such a research team might include medical doctors, veterinarians, computer scientists, engineers, technicians, researchers, and a variety of scientists from the different fields of the life sciences – all with a foundation of Research and Development.  These are good jobs for California, and we should protect and nurture them,” said Dr. Amanda Banks, President, California Biomedical Research Association. 
“At CIRM we have seen how investing in medical research does more than just advance the field and benefit scientists, it benefits all of us. Our investments have generated more than $11 billion in new sales revenues and taxes for California and helped create more than 56,000 new jobs. Through our support for stem cell research CIRM is attracting scientific talent and additional investments to California, promoting economic growth and creating an environment that supports the development of businesses and commercial enterprises in the state,” said Maria T. Millan, M.D., President and CEO, California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM).
“Developing transformative medicines for people with rare and rheumatic disease requires diverse, talented and collaborative teams. Actively participating in the biotech community is essential to our ability to make a meaningful difference in patients’ lives and further innovation. California’s tax incentives are a contributing factor to our ability to build, maintain and expand our workforce in South San Francisco and investments in the state” said Srini Ramanathan Ph.D., Vice President, Development Sciences and Site Head for South San Francisco, Horizon Therapeutics.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has underscored the value of the life sciences in treating, preventing, and innovating solutions to global challenges.  California must continue to invest, sustain, and support this vital business sector,” said Joe Kiani, Founder and CEO, Masimo Corporation.
Co-authors of AB 593:
“There are numerous examples of the benefits of biotech research for both health and the economy, most recently demonstrated by the rapid development of COVID vaccines bringing hope of ending a devastating pandemic. California’s biotech researchers bring hope to people both here and around the world,” said AB 593 Principal Co-author Dr. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento). “The Golden State Innovation Act increases investments in biotech research that attracts talent and creates high-wage jobs in California to increase economic opportunities as well as create life-changing therapies.”
"Whether it's COVID or cancer, California’s innovative biotechnology firms are on the verge of finding the cure,” AB 593 Co-author Senator Dave Min (D-Irvine) said. “But these efforts need our support. I’m proud to join this effort that will not only stimulate job growth in our state, and particularly in Orange County, which is home to many of the leading life sciences companies, but will also help people live longer and healthier by supporting the development of groundbreaking therapeutics and technology.”
“Life sciences companies like Genentech in my district are making life saving discoveries through research and development including treatment and vaccines for COVID-19 and future pandemics,” said AB 593 Co-author Senator Bill Dodd (D-Napa). “It is California’s research and development tax credit that incentivizes life science companies to invest in these activities and generate increased employment opportunities in science and engineering in our state.” 
“Biotechnology is crucial to the scientific advancement of California, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said AB 593 Co-author Assemblymember Brian Maienschein (D-San Diego). “Incentivizing research and development with tax credits will pave the way for our state to lead in the field of life sciences through job development and innovation.”
“Reinstating California’s Life Sciences research and development tax credit will be a critical step in bolstering biomedical innovation throughout the state, which is known worldwide as home to the Birthplace of Biotechnology,” said AB 593 Joint-Author Assemblymember Kevin Mullin (D-South San Francisco). “Since we continue to be in the midst of a worldwide pandemic, it is imperative we do everything possible to support Life Sciences research that benefits those suffering from a variety of health conditions, including COVID-19. For these and many other reasons, I am a proud joint-author of AB 593.”
“Highly-skilled research and development teams have produced anti-COVID vaccines with remarkable speed. But this is a persistent virus. We must do all we can to support businesses – especially those located in California – that we are counting on to develop new treatments to combat this deadly virus,” said AB 593 Joint-Author Assemblymember Tom Daly (D-Anaheim). “Without continued research and development, we are only hurting California’s ability to spur new and creative innovations.”
“California’s fiscal outlook looked grim when we were at the height of the pandemic last summer and the Legislature limited R&D tax credits and NOLs, but with a healthy economy and greater than expected revenues we must build upon our successes in critical industries. This is especially true for ones whose breakthroughs will carry us through this and future pandemics,” said AB 593 Joint-Author Assemblywoman Jacqui Irwin (D-Thousand Oaks). “The Life Sciences industry provides well-paying jobs to Californians across the state, and the research and development these restored tax credits will spur have the goal of saving and improving the lives of everyone in our state and beyond.”