If we want to be globally competitive, we need to commit to the resources it takes to compete. As Arizonans, now is our opportunity to let our elected leaders know how important we believe this is for our state today and tomorrow.
Beginning in 2003, Arizona made a $500 Million investment in research infrastructure and it paid off 7:1. Facilities that were born from that investment, including ASU Biodesign, UA BIO5, the NAU Applied Research and Development Building, and others are places in Arizona where life changing innovation is discovered, developed and delivered.
Today, leaders at the Arizona Legislature have the ability to build on that investment with a new economic development and research investment of $1 Billion. This is opportunity to build on our success, continue to diversify our economy in new areas while creating JOBS in traditional ones.
Leading the way on this are Arizona House Speaker Pro Tempore Bob Robson with HB 2033 and Senator Jeff Dial with SB 1067.
HB 2033/SB 1067 provides for a $1 Billion investment in building new research infrastructure at our universities over the three years period beginning in 2017.
HB 2033/SB 1067 provides for lease-purchase financing for that investment and appropriates $68 million in fiscal 2017-18 and $72.8 million per year for through fiscal 2047-48 in the State Budget to pay for it.
The bill’s delay reflects the state’s budget $500 million budget shortfall in fiscal 2014-15 and projected $1 billion shortage in the following fiscal year.
Here are some key facts on HB 2033: University research infrastructure projects; appropriations
- Economic analysis of the $500 Million investment in 2003 returned $7 for every $1 invested since 2003. That’s a great rate of return!
- Research investments help drive job grow industry wide. Since we made the first research investments in 2003, Arizona’s Bioscience Industry has grown. Jobs in bioscience related fields have increased by 45 percent, nearly four times greater than the nation. While not every one of these jobs is directly related to our university research infrastructure, all of them depend on both it and the credibility is gives to our growing bioscience sector which in 2014 again moved up in the national rankings. And that’s just Bio. Expanded research funding also supports the growth of our computer science, materials science, optics, materials science, engineering, and other tech industries
- $1 Billion invested in new construction in the first 3 years will directly put $2.7 billion back into the economy and return at least $5 for each $1 invested in a five- to seven-year period following construction.
- ABOR’s 2020 Plan targets growth of extra-mural research funding at ASU, NAU and UA from $1Billion per year today to $2 Billion per year by 2020. This funding comes into the universities from grant writing institutions, the federal government and industry. If they do not have the place to do the work, they will not be successful in competing for these opportunities and will not hit their goal.
- This is a jobs bill. It will put 12,000 to 15,000 people to work in construction. That’s something this economy needs.”
- Capital spending in research and development helps Arizona State University, Northern Arizona University and University of Arizona fulfill their research missions. HB2033 helps to create new homes where life changing research and innovation will take place and free’s up dollars at the universities that can be reinvested in the talent needed to do the work.
- Research labs are places of learning. Expanded research infrastructure creates more places where our students can gain real world experience alongside seasoned research leaders. Real world experience translates to better job opportunities for our students.
- This not a “special interest” initiative. Yes, the universities benefit. Yes, the construction industry benefits. Yes, our students benefit. But HB 2033/SB 1067 is more than that. We all benefit when research yields discoveries which companies develop and deliver innovative solutions to people within our State and outside of it. Here are just a few:
- Diagnostics that can help us catch disease early and help us be more successful in treating it
- Drugs and Medical Technology that improve and preserve our quality of life
- Programs to help us change our behaviors so that we do not not get sick in the first place
- New industrial materials that become products that can be manufactured in Arizona and exported from Arizona.
- Better ways to grow our food, preserve our water, and manage precious natural resources
How YOU can help:
Reach out to the Members of the House Government and Higher Education Committee and let them know why as an Arizonan, you support HB 2033. It’s easy to connect with them: simply click the link below to get their contact info and send them an email, fax them a letter, or simply call and let them know. It’s OK if the Legislator is not available. They all have dedicated staff members who are happy to share your message if they are not able to come to the phone.
- John Christopher Ackerley, Vice-Chairman (LD – 2)
- Randall Friese, Member (LD – 9)
- Jonathan R. Larkin, Member (LD – 30)
- Phil Lovas, Member (LD – 22)
- Justin Olson, Member (LD – 25)
- Warren H. Petersen, Member (LD – 12)
- Macario Saldate, Member (LD – 3)
- Bob Thorpe, Chairman (LD – 6)
- Kelly Townsend, Member (LD – 16)
Want to make a difference in just a few minutes?
Reach out to YOUR Legislators
If you know your legislators, click here to find their contact info and follow the process above.
If you do not know your legislators:
The process is easy and the impact of investing just a few minutes of your time can have on Arizona’s future is huge.
Click here to find the legislative district you live in by entering your address and zip code located at the lower left corner.After you find your district, follow this link and “Click to see the members “ Find the district you are looking for to identify your legislators and connect with them via email, fax or phone.
Together we CAN build a better Arizona.
Let’s do it.
- How to stop Arizona’s boom-bust economy: AZ Central/Arizona Republic 12/22/2015
- Billion Dollar Baby: New bill would put $1B into university R&D Budgets : Phoenix Business Journal 01/8/2015
- What would you do with a billion dollars: AZ Big Media 01/12/2015