Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Long Wait for CIRM in the California Cash Queue

How long is the line for cash in California before the state's stem cell agency might get some?

Think about $53 billion in bonds waiting to be sold. That is the amount, including CIRM-connected bonds, that has been approved but not yet brought to market. Compare that to the total of $7.35 billion in general obligation bonds sold by the state during the entire fiscal year 2007-08.

California state bonds are what pays for the grants to researchers and the operations of the stem cell research effort, which is now facing a serious cash flow problem. That's because the state has not sold bonds since last June. And it currently has $52 billion in bond indebtedness.

Once the budget mess in California is resolved, the state treasurer's office has told CIRM it will have to wait for funding until other, more pressing bond needs are met.

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