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Big Businesses Use State Tax Fund to Train Their Own Staff

Alex Kekauoha, San Francisco Public Press — Dec 12 2013 - 1:11pm

Some subsidies, worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, are awarded to multinational corporations valued in the billions

State subsidies for vocational training might provide a windfall to large corporations already able to offer similar instruction, if a planned expansion of a program funded through a tax on all businesses in California moves forward. State officials say they aim the vocational training funding at big businesses in key industries that are in danger of relocating to other states. But while tens of thousands of smaller companies pay into the program via the Employment Training Tax, it is hard for most to qualify for grants. Many do not even know the program exists.

SAN FRANCISCO’S WORKFORCE REBOOT is the cover story in the fall 2013 print edition of the San Francisco Public Press. Check back for updates on other stories.

Bay Area nonprofit helps develop affordable medicines for Third World patients

Ambika Kandasamy, SF Public Press — Sep 22 2011 - 3:37pm

Q&A with OneWorld Health CEO Richard Chin

A South San Francisco nonprofit drug development organization, OneWorld Health, is shattering the conventional profit-generating model of pharmaceutical companies by using a social enterprise approach to global health problems. Richard Chin, an internist and CEO of OneWorld Health, said the organization develops new therapies for diseases where there is either no treatment or the cost of treatment is too high.

Reversal on stem cell research calls state funding into question

Ambika Kandasamy, San Francisco Public Press — Mar 16 2009 - 12:22pm
Arnold R. Kriegstein/ Christine Jegan

With President Obama’s executive order to allow federal funding for embryonic stem cell research earlier this week, some think Proposition 71 — California’s answer to funding the controversial issue — now lacks rationale.

Prop. 71, approved by 59 percent of voters in November 2004, was the state’s way of bypassing former President George W. Bush’s restriction on federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. It provided $3 billion in state bonds to fund research centers specializing in stem cell research.

But the federal reversal, combined with the economic climate that has forced the state to look for savings under every rock, has reignited a debate about whether such a huge investment by the state was a good idea.

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