Stem Cell Agency Awaits Delayed State Loan
California's stem cell research program continues to wait for a $150 million state loan that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) announced last summer, the AP/San Francisco Examiner reports.
Schwarzenegger on July 21 pledged state funds to the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine one day after President Bush vetoed legislation that would have expanded federal funding of stem cell research.
In August, a governor's aide told CIRM members that the agency would receive the loan by the end of the month.
However, the loan awaits authorization by a stem cell finance committee, led by state Treasurer Phil Angelides, the Democratic gubernatorial candidate. No meeting to discuss the loan has been scheduled, according to the AP/Examiner.
State officials attributed the delay to the development of a payment schedule that is being worked out among groups that provided funds to maintain the stem cell agency's operations while lawsuits delayed the issuing of state bonds.
A spokesperson for the treasurer's office said that the finance committee is expected to meet and approve the loan later this month (Elias, AP/San Francisco Examiner, 10/31).