House Passes Bill To Advance Bioscience Research
SANTA FE – The House of Representatives passed House Bill 460 Tuesday night, to establish a Bioscience Authority in New Mexico. The bill sponsored, by Rep. Larry Larrañaga (R-Bernalillo), passed on a 64 to 2 vote.
House Bill 460 would create a Bioscience Authority to promote collaboration between state universities, government research institutions, including the national laboratories, and private sector entities in New Mexico. The Authority would encourage public-private partnerships, coordinate industry development activities, and identify ways to support bioscience businesses.
The concept for an authority grew from the “GrowBio” report released in 2016. The report provided an overview of current bioscience activities in New Mexico, and it found that the industry was poised for growth in the state. The study identified over 700 bioscience companies in New Mexico, and bioscience jobs represented seven percent of all private sector jobs in the state. The average wage for bioscience jobs in New Mexico is $68,000. The idea of an authority is modeled after similar successful initiatives in other states.
“It’s time for New Mexico to become an active player in this industry,” Larrañaga said. “Bioscience is a fast growing part of our state’s economy. All but two counties in New Mexico have a bioscience business. Creating an authority will help us leverage the research strength of our universities and national labs to stimulate activity and investment in this sector.”
House Bill 460 now moves to the Senate for consideration.