BIO Names Sen. Pat Roberts a Legislator of the Year

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 28, 2004) - The Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) has named Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) as a 2003-2004 "Legislator of the Year." The award was presented today during a luncheon at the Reserve Officers Association in connection with BIO's annual Legislative Day event.

"During the Medicare reform debate, Senator Roberts helped to ensure that under the final legislation, the nation's elderly and disabled patients would continue to have access to biotech medicines," said BIO President Carl B. Feldbaum.

"Senator Roberts has also been a strong proponent of agriculture and helping the U.S. farmer gain leverage in world trade negotiations. Further, he has demonstrated a commitment to increasing investment in science and technology to ensure that our country remains competitive on the research front," Feldbaum said.

More than 200 congressional meetings with more than 150 biotechnology industry representatives are expected to be conducted on Capitol Hill during the BIO Legislative Day event. Among the planned topics of discussion: regulatory issues associated with agricultural biotech, tax incentives for biomedical research, funding threats facing emerging biotech companies, the risks associated with drug importation, Medicare coverage of off-label drugs, and animal and eco-terrorism.

BIO represents more than 1,000 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations in all 50 U.S. states. BIO members are involved in the research and development of health-care, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.