"That’s a ton of money for a little-noticed agency that provides a questionable state service. But many of the research projects have been very worthwhile."
"If we don’t continue the state funding, lots of facilities would have to close their doors,” says Kendall Klingler, the Proposition 14 spokeswoman....
"'We have more than 90 stem cell trials underway,' she says.
"The agency does have a record of some success: funding research that has led to treatments approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for blood and bone marrow cancers, for example."
The FDA treatments mentioned are not stem cell treatments, which is what was promised by the 2004 campaign. The agency has not funded any research that has resulted in a stem cell therapy that is available to the general public.
And it is simply not accurate to say that "lots" of stem cell facilities partially financed with CIRM cash will be closing. All of them are occupied and fully in use. The recipients of the facilities grants, such as Stanford and UC San Francisco, are exceedingly unlikely to close the buildings.
Skelton concluded that CIRM has "failed to live up to its original hype." He said,
"It was aloof to Sacramento, and not subject to oversight by the Legislature and governor. There’s been a lack of transparency."There was also an odor of interest conflicts among agency board members who seemed to steer grants toward their own institutions, even though they recused themselves from voting."
"It's not clear that the Yes on 14 campaign's $15 million, even with a campaign that features actor Seth Rogen as “Stemmy the Stem Cell," will get the job done.
"'We’re running against Covid-19. That’s our real opposition,” said Robert Klein, the wealthy real estate investor and attorney who authored both measures and is the main funder of Prop. 14, along with Dagmar Dolby, the widow of inventor and sound engineer Ray Dolby.
"The differences between 2004 and 2020 are stark.
"Back then, Klein and other proponents had a ready-made argument by pointing to President W. Bush's prohibition on federal funding for embryonic stem-cell research, a stance supported by the religious right. In the nation's biotech capital — with an electorate dominated by Democrats and independent voters that support abortion rights — stem-cell backers made the case that California needed to step in to keep research alive.
"Many of the promises made 16 years ago, including its projections in royalties and state revenues from new treatments, have not borne out. Funding from the agency has supported more than 60 clinical trials, but CIRM has yet to fund a single stem-cell therapy approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for widespread use."