Technology-intensive companies drive economic growth. Lack of a strong technology transfer policy impedes Oklahoma's ability to attract or develop these hi-tech companies and the higher skilled and higher paying jobs that go with them. The STC report recommends improved staffing and operation of university technology transfer offices and removal of legal barriers to technology transfer as two actions for improving Oklahoma's commercialization rate and ability to develop a hi-tech infrastructure.
Constitutional changes to encourage
Constitutional changes to encourage technology transfer
State Question No. 680: Asks the voters to approve an amendment to Section 14 of Article X of the Oklahoma Constitution. Section 14 states that taxes shall be levied and collected only for public purposes. The amendment makes an exception to this provision by authorizing the use of state university facilities in conjunction with research, develop and commercialization of technology in joint ventures with private businesses which may profit from the technology. Use of university facilities for this purpose will be subject to requirements imposed by law.
State Question No. 681: Asks the voters to approve an amendment to Section 15 of Article X of the Oklahoma Constitution. Section 15 prohibits the State from becoming an owner or stockholder in any company, association, or corporation. The amendment allows state universities, their faculty and students that conduct research on or develop a technology using university facilities, equipment or services to have an ownership interest in the technology and in a private business commercializing the technology, subject to requirements imposed by law.
Oklahoma Technology Transfer
Act of 1998
Oklahoma Technology Transfer Act of 1998
The policy will also address the property interests of faculty and students in both the technology that they develop while employed by the university or using university facilities, equipment or services, and in a business developing the technology, and revenues which they may receive. Ethics rules which prevent state employees from using their position to receive compensation are amended to exempt the receipt of revenues as a result of this property interest.
The bill authorizes the board of regents for each university to own an equity interest, through an exchange of value, in these businesses and prohibits the use of appropriated funds for acquiring this equity interest.
The Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology (OCAST) is authorized to develop and implement a technology business financing program to assist qualified Oklahoma companies in commercializing new products and processes. The roles of OCAST's technology commercialization center and the technology transfer offices of state universities are clarified with legislative intent expressed that they complement each other.
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