research & development

Debbie Hart and Daniel O’Connor Appointed to the NJ Biotechnology Task Force

Governor Chris Christie appoints BioNJ President and CEO Debbie Hart and BioNJ Vice Chairman Daniel J. O’Connor to the New Jersey Biotechnology Task Force. The Task Force was created to improve communication between state government and the industry, and to find ways to help retain and attract biotechnology companies to the state. It will be led by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority.

“It is an honor to be appointed to this important Task Force,” said Debbie Hart, president and CEO, BioNJ. “This initiative has the potential for significant impact on the industry and the State. When the original Task Force was established in the early 1990s, there were approximately 30 biotech companies in New Jersey. Today there are hundreds. That Task Force, which BioNJ helped to establish, generated numerous strategies which have impacted the growth of this industry over these many years including the Technology Business Tax Certificate Program which allows the sale of NOLs. The re-established Biotechnology Task Force comes at a critical juncture to nurture and grow the industry, one of New Jersey’s strongest economic engines.

“We look forward to working with the other members of the Task Force and the New Jersey Economic Development Authority to make a difference for our industry, our economy and most importantly for Patients.”

The life sciences industry plays a major role in providing jobs and supporting the state’s economy, and the sector continues to thrive. Genetic Engineering News “Top 10 US Biopharma Clusters” 2017 report ranked the New Jersey/New York region third in the country. In New Jersey, that means 116,700 direct jobs with an annual economic impact of more than $47 billion. McKinsey & Company’s recent economic report, Re-seeding the Garden State’s Economic Growth: A Vision for New Jersey, noted “because of its large pharmaceutical cluster and its wealth of scientific and life sciences talent, New Jersey is well-positioned to benefit from the growth in biotech, which is driving innovation in life sciences.”

The Task Force is composed of nine members, including Sen. Linda Greenstein (D-14), Sen. Robert Gordon (D-38), Sen. Robert W. Singer (R-30), Asm. Gary S. Schaer (D-36), Asm. Andrew Zwicker (D-16), Asm. Jack Ciattarelli (R-16); a representative from New Jersey Economic Development Authority; as well as Hart and O’Connor.

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