Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Economic Disclosure from the California Stem Cell Report

Here is the annual economic disclosure statement from the California Stem Cell Report. We are filing it because of normal questions that might arise concerning our economic interest in stem cell research.

We, meaning my wife and I, have no investments in biotech firms or any other organizations that could benefit from stem cell research, except through mutual funds, which, of course, we have no control over. We do not hold any mutual funds that are industry specific to biotech.

Beyond that, we are not employed nor do we receive funds from any organization involved in biotech or stem cell activities. Nor is any member of our immediate family (meaning wife and adult children) involved in such a fashion. As far as we know, no distant relatives are involved in biotech or have investments in that area.

We also have no financial connections with organizations that support or oppose CIRM.

All of the above is unchanged from last year.

One would hope that reporters, observers or others trying to influence CIRM (which is not the same as reporters) would be willing to make the same sort of economic disclosure as above. By that we mean specific dollar amounts, from $1 (one dollar) and up – not those wimpy disclosures required under state law or by CIRM.

Beyond the economics, the California Stem Cell Report supports embryonic stem cell research. We believe that CIRM is pursuing a worthwhile endeavor. We also believe that openness, transparency and disclosure are fundamental to good government. That means providing background agenda material well ahead of meeting dates, among other things. Otherwise, meetings can amount to nothing more than sneak-through business, plenty of which can be seen in Congress and the California Legislature.

We also believe in maximum disclosure -- when it doubt lay it out. Specifically all persons with signficant responsibility within CIRM, including members of CIRM working groups, should publicly disclose their economic interests in more detail than required by state law. Outside contractors should disclose their interests as well.

If you have questions or comments on this, you can post them by clicking the word "comment" below or by sending them directly to djensen@californiastemcellreport.blogspot.com. It is possible to comment anonymously by using the "comments" function.

1 comment:

  1. Re: John M. Simpson's Financial disclosure

    I have no investments in biotech or pharmaceutical companies, except possibly through mutual funds in my retirement accounts.

    My wife Carol, who is the more active investor in the family managing virtually all our investment activity, has the following biotech or pharmaceutical stocks in her IRA account:

    Amgen -- 100 shares
    Elan -- 200 shares
    Medimmune -- 9 shares
    Pracecis -- 100 shares
    Bristol-Myers -- 200 shares
    Baxter -- 100 shares

    All the stock was acquired before I joined the Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights. Carol views these shares as long term investments and has neither bought nor sold biotech or pharmaceutical stocks since December 2005 when I joined FTCR.

    FTCR's Stem Cell Oversight and Accountability Project is funded with a $100,000 grant from the Nathan Cummings Foundation.

    John M. Simpson
    Stem Cell Project Director
    Foundation for Taxpayer and Consumer Rights


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