The Illinois Department of Community Economic Opportunity created the Biotechnology/Bioscience Training Investment Program (BioTIP) to provide state funded grants to companies to cover training costs for graduate students who find part-time employment as lab technicians/engineers in the biotechnology sector as well as additional training to students to enhance their practical skills. Under this program, employers are reimbursed for up to 50% of the costs for training for graduate student employees.
California: Workforce and Development Program
The Economic & Workforce Development Program in California was established to create education, training, and services that contribute to workforce improvement, technology deployment and business development in identified strategic priority area including biotechnology. The program provides communication and direct interaction between private and public sector education and other private training providers. The California Community Colleges work with employers, advisory committees, and agency partners to identify workforce education and training needs both in the classroom and in corporate on-site locations.
5. Supportive Business Climate Incentives
The need for a stable and supportive public policy framework is vital to industry firms large and small. It is almost impossible for any state or region to ignore the need for selective incentives to either hold existing bioscience companies or attract new enterprises. Lawmakers have become increasingly aware of the unique challenges facing bioscience companies such as the high cost and the length of time involved in the development of new bioscience products. They understand the importance of a stable and supportive business climate for small and emerging companies.
Some states are allowing companies to monetize earned R&D and net operating loss credits, sales tax exemptions for the purchase of R&D equipment, and investment tax credits to drive angel capital investment in the bioscience industry. Below are examples of such comprehensive initiatives:
New Jersey: High Tech Job Creation and Retention Act
In 1997, New Jersey passed the "High-Tech Job Retention" legislation, an economic development bill designed to incentivize investment in small high-tech companies with fewer than 225 employees. The law, a four-bill package included an investment tax credit; a transferable research and development tax credit; extension of net operating losses carry-forwards from 7 years to 15 years; and research and development tax credits.
Colorado's Sales Tax Exemption for R&D Equipment
The Colorado State Legislature enacted legislation in 1999 establishing a refund for qualified taxpayers of all state sales and use tax paid during a given calendar year for the purchase, storage, use, or consumption of tangible personal property to be used in Colorado directly and predominately in research and development of biotechnology.
Iowa: Power Fund Technology
This legislation, passed in 2007, institutes a four-year commitment of $100 million to increase research, development, production and use of biofuels and other sources of renewable energy. The objective is to improve energy efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, this legislation calls for further research, development, commercialization and distribution of technologies and practices to sustain the environment and develop business in Iowa.
Approximately $25 million per year will be available to provide financial assistance to businesses, nonprofits, educational institutions, units of state and local government and individuals conducting business, research or programs in the state. Financial assistance is to be used to accelerate research and development, knowledge transfer, technology innovation, improve economic competitiveness, increase the demand for and educate the public about technologies and approaches to advance the above goals.