AZBio is the unified voice of Arizona’s bioscience industry – at the national, statewide and local level.
Advocacy is a key responsibility of any industry association. The AZBio Government Affairs Policy and Plan for 2011/2012 provides a framework for the key concepts and initiatives that we as AZBio believe are critical to the growth of the bioscience industry in Arizona and nationally as well as to our community as a whole. Using this plan, our AZBio Team, Leadership, and Government Affairs Committee will work with our Members, Elected Officials, Agencies, and the Public to:
- MONITOR the government related activity in our communities, state, and nation,
- EDUCATE our communities and membership as well as our elected representatives and public officials on initiatives and activities that promote a working partnership and support the growth of a vibrant biosciences industry to the benefit of everyone in our state.
- INFORM our members about existing government programs, laws and regulations as well as new legislation or regulation that is being proposed so that they can make informed decisions and take actions that they determine best fit based on the needs of their business,
their employees and their community.
AZBio’s Key Initiatives for 2011/2012 are:
Talent and Workforce Initiatives:
- Continue to fund and support state and local funding to bioscience-related education and training programs which include: Science, biosciences and technology programs such as academies, courses
and programs in K-12 education (including STEM)
- Company-specific customized job training programs that help bioscience firms expand and upgrade their workforce
- Bioscience-focused higher education courses, centers and programs that educate and train for future workers from Arizona’s public higher education institutions including community colleges and
Science and Technology Initiatives:
- Direct discretionary funds available to the Arizona Commerce Authority in ways to stimulate the growth of Arizona’s
bioscience industry through support of programs to provide technological commercialization assistance to universities, medical and research institutions, and firms to better identify research that can be turned into product for patients including proof of concept, engineering optimization, market and technical assessments. This includes related areas such as Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) support to firms; higher education and medical center
technology transfer efforts and filling risk capital gaps in Arizona.
- Continue State matching funding support for Science Foundation Arizona (SFAz). More than half of SFAz’s funding has gone to
projects to help further Arizona’s biosciences including its research base, partnerships of industry and academia, and to develop the future talent pool. Every $1 of State funds has leveraged $3.06 in private and other funding support.
- Protect the Arizona Biomedical Research Commission’s (ABRC) funding sources for it to continue to invest and sustain the
State’s bioscience and biomedical research base for the future.
- Maintain momentum in the expansion and development of the U of A downtown medical campus through both state capital and
Business Climate Inititaives:
- Rejuvenate Arizona’s venture capital base and industry through raising private and public fund investments in an Arizona
Fund of Funds and implement said program to include hiring of professional managers with knowledge and experience with investing in the bioscience industry.
- Continue to improve Arizona’s business climate by: 1) Expanding Arizona’s angel tax credit by providing tax credits to individuals investing in early stage venture funds located in Arizona. 2) Providing a sales tax exemption for equipment used in R & D for
bio-manufacturing and exempt equipment purchased from the state sales tax. 3) Increasing the level of the State’s R & D tax credit for R & D undertaken by Arizona firms with Arizona institutions.
- Address and encourage Arizona State regulators, including AHCCCS, to adopt rules and regulations that enable the growth of Arizona bioscience firms by: 1) Coordinating with other stakeholders
regarding reimbursement issues including industry members, research/teaching institutions and hospitals.
Get involved with AZBio Government Affairs:
The AZBio Government Affairs Committee meets monthly to provide key insights on issues and memebr needs. All AZBio members are welcome to join us for these meetings or to dial in. Meeting announcments are posted on the AZBIO events calendar each month. To be added to the government affairs announcment list, click here.