PROVIDENCE, RI – On Monday morning, Governor Dan McKee, House Speaker Joe Shekarchi, and Commerce Secretary Liz Tanner heard from a panel of local biotechnology leaders who highlighted the impact of the proposed investments in life sciences in the Governor's #RIReady FY24 budget.
Brian Britson of Amgen, Carol Malysz of RI BIO, and Justin Fallon of Bolden Therapeutics participated in a panel discussion moderated by Neil Steinberg, CEO of the Rhode Island Foundation.
Governor McKee's budget proposal includes investing $45 million into the life sciences sector for the development of much-needed wet lab incubator spaces. Funds would also be used to support grants, loans, business development and incubation services to grow this sector.
"In my State of the State address, I said that Rhode Island was ready – and we are ready to become a leader in the life sciences industry," said Governor Dan McKee. "This investment will draw in biotechnology companies from around the world. That means good-paying jobs, innovative technologies, and steady economic development. Our #RIReady budget proposal will make Rhode Island an even more attractive place to live and do business."
"The life sciences sector is experiencing major growth, and I am very excited about Rhode Island's potential to become a hub for this sector," said House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi. "The pandemic highlighted the need for more scientific breakthroughs, and the life sciences industry could significantly improve the health of humankind and our planet in areas like cell therapy, emerging health threats, or cleaner fuels. It's also a major catalyst for economic development. By making strategic investments in the industries that have the most potential for growth, we're setting our local economy up for long-term success."
"Because of our size, location, and workforce development opportunities, Rhode Island has the opportunity to be a major hub in this sector, but we can't do it without the right infrastructure," said Commerce Secretary Liz Tanner. "By investing in a wet lab incubator space, we put our state on the map. With the right tools in place, the economic development potential is limitless."
"The state's $45M investment will provide the much-needed infrastructure and resources to grow Rhode Island's life sciences economy. Rhode Island has gained the momentum to unlock the next generation of treatments, discover new cures, and help patients take greater control of their own health," said Carol Malysz, CEO of RI BIO. "With all of our stakeholders working together, we can grow the life sciences ecosystem in RI and transform the state into a recognized leader as a life sciences innovation hub."
"Having a state-of-the-art incubator facility in Rhode Island would be a tremendous boon to the local economy," said Justin Fallon, Scientific Founder of Bolden Therapeutics. "With increasing support and focus on fostering biomedical innovation from the state, universities, and hospital systems in Rhode Island, there could be no better time than now."