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SSTI Digest

CONNECTICUT ALLOCATES $30 MILLION TO BUILD BIOTECH LAB SPACE

Connecticut Innovations, Inc. recently allocated $20 million of new state funds and $10 million of its own funds to develop biotechnology laboratory space in Connecticut. Connecticut Innovations’ new facilities fund can be administered using a variety of investment vehicles. The fund may offer loan or lease guarantees, enhancing the credit of companies that would not otherwise be able to qualify for leases. Alternatively, Connecticut Innovations may provide direct financing to high-tech companies or to real estate developers working with high- tech companies that have specific laboratory space requirements.

HIGH-TECH INDUSTRIES DRIVING GLOBAL ECONOMIC ACTIVITY

Four industries (aerospace, computers and office machinery, electronics and communications equipment, and pharmaceuticals) are growing at a rate more than twice as fast as other manufactured goods,  thereby driving national economic growth around the world, according  to a National Science Foundation (NSF) Issue Brief, High-Tech Industries Drive Global Economic Activity (NSF 98-319).

EPSCoT UPDATE

The first round of applications for the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Technology (EPSCoT) have been submitted. Eighteen of the nineteen eligible states participated, either by submitting single-state applications or by collaborating with others to produce multi-state applications. In all, 25 applications were received, requesting over $9.4 million in funding.

SBA ANNOUNCES 1998 TIBBETS AWARD WINNERS

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced that 61 individuals representing all fifty states and the District of Columbia will be honored this year as recipients of the Tibbets Award.  The Tibbets Awards recognizes the technological innovation, economic impact and business achievements of those involved in the federal Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program.

PEOPLE IN THE NEWS

NGA Leadership --- At its 1998 Annual Meeting in Milwaukee,  the National Governor’s Association (NGA) named its new leadership to steer the initiatives and agenda for the association.Delaware Governor THOMAS R. CARPER was named NGA’s chairman, and Utah Governor MICHAEL O. LEAVITT vice chairman. The positions are for a term of one year. At the meeting, the nation’s governors focused primarily on initiatives for the new millennium, and resolved to continue trying to fortify the federal-state partnership. The centerpiece of the August meeting was state innovations in technology which included 30 state technology exhibits. ASME/USIP FELLOW -- Susan Ipri Brown began her term as the United States Innovation Partnership (USIP) Fellow in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) on September 1. The fellowship is funded by the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. Ms. Brown most recently served as Science Research Analyst in the Michigan Legislative Science Bureau. In her new capacity as USIP Fellow in OSTP's Technology Division, Brown will support USIP activities aimed at enhancing state-federal cooperation and technology-based economic growth.. The fellowship was held most recently by Dr. John Ahlen of the Arkansas Science & Technology Authority.

Bill Introduced in Senate to Make SBIR Program Permanent

Significant changes to the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program were proposed on July 31, 1998 by Senator Christopher Bond (R-MO), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Small Business, when he introduced Senate Bill S. 2407, the Small Business Programs Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998.

People in the News

Before leaving for its August recess, the Senate confirmed Neal Lane to be Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy and Bill Richardson to be Secretary of Energy.

Conference Reminder

Just a reminder that early registration for SSTI's Second Annual Conference, Science and Technology Programs: Catalysts for Economic Growth, are due August 31. The conference will be held September 24 & 25 in Columbus, Ohio. Full details can be found on SSTI's home page at www.ssti.org or by calling SSTI at 614/421-SSTI (7784).

DIGEST TAKES A VACATION

During the month of August, the SSTI Weekly Digest will be published every other week. The Digest will be published August 14 and August 28. It will resume weekly publication September 4.

NSF RELEASES 1998 SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING INDICATORS

The most comprehensive source of statistical information on science and engineering issues has been released by the National Science Board. "Science and Engineering Indicators: 1998" is the 13th report in a biennial series.

CALL MADE FOR $250M FUND FOR STATE TECHNOLOGY INNOVATION CHALLENGE GRANTS

A Washington, D.C.-based think tank has issued a call for the creation of a $250 million fund to be directed to the states for Technology Innovation Challenge Grants. The fund would be used by the states to invest in university- industry and other technology and innovation network programs.

R&D TAX CREDIT EXPIRES

The Research and Experimentation Tax Credit expired on June 30, and there is concern that it may not be renewed this year. Reports indicate that the most likely vehicle for the tax credit would be a general tax bill, but according to the American Institute of Physics, the chances of a tax bill being agreed to by Congress and signed by President Clinton before the end of the session are considered slim.

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