Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Flogging Not Yet Finished

San Franciso Mayor Gavin Newsom this morning is echoing the words of the soul singer James Brown.

“I feel good,” Newsom said after his city's bid for the permanent HQ of the California stem cell agency was ranked No. 1 by the agency's site selection committee. Sacramento and San Diego ran neck-and-neck for second.

But as someone once said, “It ain't over til it's over.” The three cities make presentations to the full Oversight Committee on Friday. The candidates for the presidency of the agency will also make their views known or reaffirm them. Then there are the wishes of Chairman Robert Klein.

Backers of each city made it clear they will pitch their proposals throughout the week. For example, the most powerful legislator in California on stem cell issues, Sen. Deborah Ortiz, D-Sacramento, stressed once again that she would like to see the agency in Sacramento.

Her office released a statement late Monday that said, “While all of the proposals were outstanding, I believe Sacramento, like the state-of-the-art research authorized by Proposition 71, represents the promise and hope of the future.

“While other regions have been stagnant, Sacramento has seen a 30 percent growth in medical, health and technology sectors. We are the shiny new home to a growing hub of cutting-edge research and treatment into cancer, autism, Alzheimer’s disease, organ transplants, cardiology and spinal cord injuries. We offer an affordable, quality-of-life, the seat of state government and an integrated, world-class health care system.”

Reporter Laura Mecoy of The Sacramento Bee noted some regional bias on the part of the San Diego site selection committee members, John Reed and Richard Murphy. Reporter Carl Hall of the San Francisco Chronicle wrote that Phyllis Preciado of Fresno leaned heavily towards Sacramento.

Here are links to other stories: Reporter Louis Sahagun, Los Angeles Times; Sandy Kleffman, Contra Costa Times; Rebecca Vesely, Oakland Tribune, Jim Hopkins, USA Today; San Diego Daily Transcript (no byline)
Paul Elias, The Associated Press, Terri Somers, San Diego Union Tribune.
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