Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Gov. Rick Perry Speaks at Technology Week

*Note - Gov. Perry frequently departs from prepared remarks.
Tuesday, March 01, 2005  •  Speech

Thank you, Representative Morrison. It is an honor to be here with leaders who are working together to improve our quality of life through innovation, and laying the foundation for a prosperous future in the high tech economy.

Tech Week is a great time to highlight the need for Texas to join the growing number of states that are investing in technology research, development and commercialization by establishing a $300 million Emerging Technology Fund. An Emerging Technology Fund will allow us to create new partnerships between private sector entities and universities across the state, attract top-notch research teams from around the country to Texas institutions of higher learning, and help start-up companies get off the ground faster so their inventions get to consumers sooner. And an Emerging Technology Fund will allow us to stay competitive with states like California, Ohio, Florida and New Jersey that have made huge financial commitments to lure high-tech researchers and employers that will provide the jobs in the marketplace of tomorrow.

In recent days I have traveled the state and witnessed first-hand the potential an Emerging Technology Fund has to change the way we live. Last month I visited a company in San Antonio called VidaCare that has revolutionized trauma care with a new technology that delivers IV fluids to patients minutes faster when their veins are collapsing. After being on the market for just three months, it is already being used in several Texas cities, it has helped in the tsunami relief efforts, and it’s saving the lives of wounded soldiers in Iraq. In Houston, I saw a new miniature artificial heart developed by MicroMed Technology in partnership with NASA, a device that has given a new lease on life to hundreds of patients around the world waiting for a heart transplant. And across this state, I have heard countless business, science and academia leaders uniformly express their support for a new Emerging Technology Fund that will help develop the medical and scientific breakthroughs that will fuel the economy of the 21st Century. High-tech methods to detect breast cancer, Doppler radar that alerts us to oncoming storms, even the Internet, can all trace their origins to a partnership between government and industry. What these partnerships prove is that when we invest public resources into emerging technology, the possibilities for revolutionary developments are limitless.

I ask Texans to envision the implications that an Emerging Technology Fund could have for new companies that are working to develop the faster computer chip, the gene therapies and treatments that will rescue people from terminal and chronic diseases, or the cleaner technologies that will clean the air our children breathe. I ask Texans to envision the world’s best scientists and researchers working at Texas colleges and universities, giving our students the education and experience they need to succeed in the workplace of tomorrow. I ask Texans to envision the thousands of jobs this fund will help high-tech companies bring to our state in the future, because when the state invests in a specific research and development project, we can require that the manufacturing of that new product take place in Texas. And I ask members of the legislature who are setting budget priorities to make this vision a reality by investing $300 million in an Emerging Technology Fund. The return on their investment will be stunning, and will help ensure Texas scientists lead the next wave in the technology revolution, and ensure that the financial benefits from marketing technology innovations accrue to Texas colleges, Texas workers and the Texas economy.

Thank you. At this time, we would be happy to take a few questions.

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