Thursday, June 23, 2011

Prolife House member sends letter to universities encouraging them to follow embryonic stem cell reporting law

After signing Michigan's budget bill, Governor Rick Snyder noted his administration wasn't going to ask universities to comply with a part of the budget which requires them to fill out a one-page report on their embryonic stem cell activities.

However, prolife House Representative Bob Genetski and prolife Attorney General Bill Schuette have advised universities to report their activities.

In letters to the schools, Rep. Bob Genetski, R-Saugatuck, said "I strongly encourage you to comply with the standards and intent set by the Legislature...The language ensures that universities collecting human embryonic stem cells must generate and submit reports to DCH regarding number of stem cell lines donated, the number used for research, the number held in storage and the number of research projects using stem cells derived from donated embryos."

Attached to his letter to the universities was a letter from Richard Bandstra, chief legal officer to Attorney General Bill Schuette, that said lawmakers had the constitutional right to seek such reports.

Noting that the amendment does contain some restrictions on the buying and selling of embryos in addition following federal law, Bandstra wrote: "By requiring the kind of reporting at issue here, the Legislature is apparently attempting to fulfill its obligation to assure that any taxpayer dollars used for stem cell research purposes are not spent in contravention of these constitutional parameters and restrictions."