For Immediate Release
August 18, 2004
California Mayors & Local Elected Officials Endorse Proposition 71
Noting Measure's Promise to Save Lives and Boost Local Economies Los Angeles City Council Votes Unanimously to Lend Support to Prop. 71
(Los Angeles, CA) -- Supporters of Proposition 71, the California Stem Cell Research and Cures Initiative, today announced that mayors and local elected officials across California have endorsed the measure, adding to a growing, broad and diverse coalition mobilizing to ensure passage of Prop. 71 on the November 2004 statewide ballot. Today's announcement was led by the unanimous endorsement of Prop. 71 by the Los Angeles City Council.
The initiative would provide funds needed for the development of lifesaving therapies and cures for diseases that could save the lives of millions of California children and adults, reduce state health care costs and provide a boost to regional economies.
"More than 128 million Americans, including millions of Californians, suffer from diseases or injuries that may one day be cured by stem cell research," said Mayor James Hahn of Los Angeles. "These devastating medical conditions affect a child or an adult in nearly one-half of all families. Proposition 71 will provide the much needed funding to make the promise of new cures and treatments a reality. Not only will Prop 71 save lives, but it will reduce health care costs in the long term and provide a boost to L.A.'s economy, especially in the biotech and medical research community."
"Proposition 71 will give California's research institutions, hospitals, and research laboratories the resources needed to seek cures and treatments for debilitating diseases such as diabetes, Alzheimer's and heart disease," said Los Angeles City Council President Alex Padilla. "My mother has been diagnosed with diabetes, and I certainly want her to receive the best health care possible. Proposition 71 will ensure that my mother and future generations will be helped with the latest in medical treatments that save lives."
In addition to Mayor James Hahn, Mayor Gavin Newsom of San Francisco, Mayor Ron Gonzales of San Jose, Mayor Larry Agran of Irvine, Mayor Miguel Pulido of Santa Ana, Mayor John Duran of West Hollywood and Mayor Paul Albritton of Sausalito also announced their enthusiastic support for Prop. 71. Joining the Los Angeles City Council, a growing list of local elected officials have also signed on to support Prop. 71, including the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, San Francisco Board of Supervisors, Marin County Board of Supervisors, the City of Santa Barbara and the City of West Hollywood; each of these jurisdictions have passed resolutions in support of the initiative. A complete list of elected officials supporting Prop. 71 can be obtained from the web site at www.Yeson71.com .
"At a time when healthcare costs are skyrocketing, Prop. 71 could significantly reduce state health care costs," said Mayor Gavin Newsom of San Francisco. "If stem cell research and its associated technologies reduce state health care costs by even one percent, Prop 71 would pay for itself several times over during the following decade."
Newsom added, "Prop. 71 is a win-win: We're saving lives and making a positive impact on San Francisco's and the entire Bay Area's regional economy."
San Jose Mayor Ron Gonzales said, " As a result of Proposition 71, California will be able to harness our state's incredible creativity, technology and vision that will change lives for the better. I endorse this measure because it will lead to breakthrough discoveries that will improve the health of our people and strengthen our long-term economic prosperity."
The mayors and local elected officials join a diverse and broadening coalition of grassroots supporters including Nobel Prize-winning scientists and medical experts, business leaders and groups, faith-based organizations, families involved in patient advocacy and efforts to cure diseases, and organizations like the Alzheimer's Association California Council, California Medical Association, American Nurses Association of California, American Diabetes Association, Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation, Sickle Cell Disease Foundation of California, ALS Therapy Development Foundation, Parkinson's Action Network, California Congress of Seniors, Gray Panthers and the National Coalition for Cancer Research.
Mayor John Duran of West Hollywood said, "On behalf of the City of West Hollywood, I am pleased and proud to support Prop. 71. This science has tremendous medical promise to provide treatments and cures for HIV/AIDS, Alzheimer's and diabetes."
In addition to its potential to save lives and reduce health care costs, Prop. 71 invests in California's local economies and provides a much-needed economic boost throughout the state. Under Prop. 71, California will benefit from patents and royalties that result from the research and tax revenues generated by new construction and research jobs, and the initiative will allow California to remain as an unparalleled research location.
Proposition 71 was developed by a coalition of California families and medical experts determined to close the stem cell research funding gap. Currently, our state has no effective mechanism to fund stem cell research and political roadblocks have severely limited federal funding for some of the most promising types of stem cell research.
More information on Proposition 71 can be obtained at www.YesOn71.com .