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News Release
12/11/2008
CONTACT CONTACT: Jerry Flanagan, (310) 889-4912
Santa Monica, CA -- Less than 15% of U.S. voters support, and 53% oppose, a proposal pushed by health insurers requiring every American to provide proof of private health insurance or face tax penalties or other fines, according to a new poll. The poll, commissioned by Consumer Watchdog, also found that by just under a two-to-one margin voters...
News Release
11/20/2008
CONTACT CONTACT: John Simpson, cell: (310) 292-1902
Recommendations Come In Testimony  Requested By State’s Efficiency Unit, “Little Hoover Commission”   Sacramento, CA -- The oversight board of California’s stem cell agency should be reduced to 15 and new members representing the general public interest must be included, Consumer Watchdog said today. In addition...
Blog Post
10/14/2008
Posted by John M. Simpson
In its fight to muster a quorum for regular stem cell board meetings, a board subcommittee has signed off on a plan that would let some members take part by telephone. Under its bylaws the 29-member stem cell agency board, the Independent Citizens Oversight Committee, requires a supermajority of 65 percent to conduct business.  Increasingly,...
Blog Post
9/29/2008
Posted by John M. Simpson
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has vetoed a bill that would have enacted into law intellectual property policy provisions covering research funded by the state stem cell agency, the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine. Essentially the bill would have put into statute regulations that were developed by the agency and its board, the...
Blog Post
9/26/2008
Posted by John M. Simpson
The California stem agency board barely mustered a quorum at its meeting in San Diego Thursday partly because one member had just resigned from the board, thus  lowering the threshold necessary to conduct business. Under California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) rules, a super majority of 65 percent is required for a quorum....
Blog Post
9/26/2008
Posted by John M. Simpson
California's Little Hoover Commission voted at its meeting this week to examine the state stem cell agency's governance structure and oversight committee.  I expect the first public hearing about the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM) will come in November. Here's how the commission describes itself: "The Little...
Blog Post
9/23/2008
Posted by John M. Simpson
Stem Cell Board Chairman Bob Klein and member Jeff Sheehy clashed heatedly over a former board member's highly paid consultancy to the state agency at a recent meeting of the Governance Subcommittee. I lit the spark on Friday when I asked what Dr. Richard Murphy was doing under the description of "Strategic Consulting" for a fee $155,...
Blog Post
9/22/2008
Posted by John M. Simpson
Two California stem cell agency subcommittees meeting Friday and Saturday faced an ongoing problem -- mustering enough members for a quorum. In a particular irony the Governance Subcommittee on Friday lacked a quorum the entire time members who were present discussed a possible solution by changing bylaws so some members of the agency's board can...
News Release
9/19/2008
CONTACT CONTACT: John M. Simpson, 310-392-0522, x317; or Dan Ravicher, 212-790-0442
SANTA MONICA, CA -- Legal papers just filed with the U.S. Patent Office cite two legal errors made by a patent examiner in confirming a patent on human embryonic stem cells and ask its claims be rejected, two consumer groups said today. In their brief to the U.S. Patent Office's Board of Appeals and Interferences, Consumer Watchdog and the Public...
News Release
9/15/2008
CONTACT CONTACT: John M. Simpson, 310-392-0522, ext 317; or cell: 310-292-1902
Santa Monica, CA -- Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger should sign a stem cell public accountability bill,  SB1565, into law, Consumer Watchdog said today.  The bill, sponsored by Sen. Sheila Kuehl and Sen. George Runner, was passed with overwhelming bipartisan support in both houses of the Legislature. In a letter to the governor, the...