BIO Names Sen. Tom Harkin a Legislator of the Year

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 24, 2002) – As part of its annual Legislative Day event, the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) today named Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) a Legislator of the Year.

“BIO salutes congressional leaders such as Senator Harkin who see biotechnology’s
potential, especially in the industrial and environmental areas,” said BIO President Carl B. Feldbaum. “His support for the biorefinery grant provision and biobased product purchasing requirements in this year’s Farm Bill could translate into true innovation in the energy and agricultural arenas.

“In health care, Senator Harkin has passionately supported federal funding of stem cell research and continued research into somatic cell nuclear transfer. In January, he co-sponsored a bill that would ban reproductive cloning while allowing therapeutic research to move forward.

“He has also played a leading role in doubling the budget of the National Institutes of Health, as ranking minority member and now chairman of the Senate Appropriation’s Subcommittee on Labor, Health, Human Services and Education,” added Feldbaum.

More than 230 congressional meetings with more than 160 industry representatives
were held on Capitol Hill today, during BIO’s annual Legislative Day event. Participants discussed important biotechnology issues, including the reauthorization of the Prescription Drug User Fee Act, Medicare reform, prescription drug coverage, and reducing trade barriers for American farmers.

BIO represents more than 1,000 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations in all 50 U.S. states and 33 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of health-care, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products.

# # #