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Letters: Funding research with fines

September 02, 2012

Re "No traffic fines for research," Editorial, Aug. 28

I wrote AB 1657 because budget cuts eliminated the state general fund's support for spinal cord research that existed since 2000.

I disagree with the Times' conclusion about the state's role in research when we have one of the most renowned research institutions in the world—the University of California. UC medical researchers represent some of the top scientific minds in the field. They are not “outside interests,” as you refer to them.

California should invest in its human capital and give our researchers the funding necessary to start vital research projects. The very grants funded through AB 1657 would attract National Institutes of Health funds.

AB 1657 will result in medical advances that improve the quality of life for the 650,000 Californians living with paralysis from spinal cord injuries. We owe it to them to continue with our commitment to fund basic scientific research.

Bob Wieckowski

Fremont

The writer is a Democratic state Assembly member.

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