Thursday, May 28, 2009

Klein Letter to Little Hoover Commission

Here is the text of the letter sent by CIRM Chairman Robert Klein this week to the Little Hoover Commission.

May 26, 2009
Daniel W. Hancock
Chairman, Little Hoover Commission
925 L Street, Suite 805
Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear Chairman Hancock:

We understand that the Little Hoover Commission Subcommittee on the
California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (“CIRM”) will be meeting tomorrow to consider draft recommendations from its staff. Unfortunately, my wife is undergoing treatment for breast cancer, having just completed her third surgery, and my mother passed away this weekend, so I will not be able to attend the meeting, and CIRM’s President, Dr. Alan Trounson, is traveling out of state so he will not be able to share our views with you. After the Commission’s first hearing, Dr. Alan Trounson and I embraced Commissioner Kaye’s sentiments that a collaborative effort, with the Commission and CIRM working together, would be the most productive. I want to assure you that despite the unfortunate timing of tomorrow’s meeting, we remain highly committed to working collaboratively with you on recommendations to improve CIRM’s performance. CIRM has a long history of working with others to find common ground. For example, CIRM has previously acted on suggestions from members of the Legislature, the Bureau of State Audits, the Controller, and members of the public to enhance its efficiency and transparency.

In an effort to promote a dialogue, I have requested, through CIRM staff and
through your staff at a CIRM meeting in Los Angeles, the opportunity to meet with members of the Commission to discuss your ideas for improving CIRM’s performance. I believe a discussion of ideas with your board will lead to the best outcome rather than CIRM “staking out” a position. To date, however, no meetings have been scheduled. I also understand that your staff will not share its draft recommendations with CIRM. This, of course, raises a question about how CIRM can participate in this process without seeing the staff’s recommendations.

On behalf of Dr. Trounson and myself, I apologize that we cannot join you
tomorrow for the Subcommittee meeting. Again, we strongly believe that a collaborative effort to evaluate proposals will best advance the goal, as expressed by Commissioner Kaye, of identifying recommendations that could be implemented through legislation rather than another ballot measure, and we look forward to working with you to achieve common objectives. I am also committed to taking any recommendations for enhancing CIRM’s effectiveness to CIRM’s full Governing Board for a full discussion. The Board’s diversity spans the spectrum from deans of medical schools to presidents of independent research institutions to patient advocates who are themselves suffering from a chronic disease and to patient advocates who have worked with the federal government to advance this critical research. Finally, the board includes experts who have experience in actually developing and delivering therapies to patients. The rich diversity of the Board can contribute greatly to the development of collaborative recommendations that will benefit CIRM and the citizens of California. I am confident that, by working together, we can ensure that CIRM serves as a model for innovation and effectiveness.

Robert N. Klein Chairman, CIRM’s governing board Sphere: Related Content

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