Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Rare Teleconference Session of CIRM Directors on Monday

Californians will have an unusual opportunity next Monday to tell the directors of the $3 billion California stem cell agency what they think and listen to them attempt to solve a problem that has nagged them since 2005.

The occasion is a meeting of the directors, who are officially known as the Independent Citizens Oversight Committee. Virtually all of their meetings have been held under circumstances that require the physical presence of interested parties who might want to observe or comment.

However, on Monday, the meeting will be conducted via teleconference arrangements from locations throughout the state, from Healdsburg to La Jolla. One site in San Antonio, Tx, is included. Apparently one director will be staying at the Grand Hyatt there.

All the locations are public for the purposes of this meeting. The agenda includes only one item – a plan to solve the problem of meeting the board's super-quorum requirement of 65 percent at meetings of the 29-member group. The requirement is enshrined in state law courtesy of Prop. 71 and is politically nearly impossible to alter. Instead, the plan to help provide better director attendance provides for the telephonic participation of a limited number of directors on a limited basis for regular meetings.

Monday's meeting also provides an opportunity for the public to comment on any issue, although the board is legally restricted to action only on agenda items.

Here is the current list of teleconference locations in California other than Healdsburg and La Jolla(two sites): San Francisco(two sites), Sacramento, Los Angeles(five sites), Duarte, Menlo Park, Elk Grove, Irvine, Pleasanton and San Carlos. The locations could change, so keep an eye on the agenda, which also includes the specific addresses. Sphere: Related Content

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