Bill Text: NJ S3273 | 2018-2019 | Regular Session | Introduced


Bill Title: Establishes "Supporting Educational and Entrepreneurial Development (S.E.E.D.) Program" in Office of Secretary of Higher Education.

Spectrum: Bipartisan Bill

Status: (Introduced) 2019-03-07 - Referred to Senate Budget and Appropriations Committee [S3273 Detail]

Download: New_Jersey-2018-S3273-Introduced.html

SENATE, No. 3273

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

218th LEGISLATURE

 

INTRODUCED DECEMBER 10, 2018

 


 

Sponsored by:

Senator  THOMAS H. KEAN, JR.

District 21 (Morris, Somerset and Union)

Senator  SANDRA B. CUNNINGHAM

District 31 (Hudson)

 

 

 

 

SYNOPSIS

     Establishes "Supporting Educational and Entrepreneurial Development (S.E.E.D.) Program" in Office of Secretary of Higher Education.

 

CURRENT VERSION OF TEXT

     As introduced.

  


An Act establishing the "Supporting Educational and Entrepreneurial Development (S.E.E.D.) Program" and supplementing chapter 3B of Title 18A of the New Jersey Statutes. 

 

     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:

 

     1.    There is established a "Supporting Educational and Entrepreneurial Development (S.E.E.D.) Program" in the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education.  The purpose of the S.E.E.D. Program shall be to support original student-led projects through the awarding of grants from the fund established pursuant to section 4 of this act.  Awards made through the program shall provide the initial funding necessary to support the development of promising new concepts, products, or companies led by the next generation of researchers. 

 

     2.    a.  The S.E.E.D. Program shall be implemented by a board that consists of seven members including the Secretary of Higher Education, or a designee; a representative of the New Jersey Business and Industry Association appointed by the Governor; and five public members.  The five public members shall be appointed as follows: one by the President of the Senate; one by the Minority Leader of the Senate; one by the Speaker of the General Assembly; one by the Minority Leader of the General Assembly; and one by the Governor, with the advice and consent of the Senate.  The Secretary of Higher Education, or a designee and the representative of the New Jersey Business and Industry Association shall serve as co-chairpersons of the board.

     b.    Each member of the board, other than the secretary who shall serve ex-officio, shall serve for a term of four years and until a successor is appointed and qualified; except that of the members first appointed, one shall be appointed to serve for one year, one for two years, two for three years, and two for four years.  Any vacancy in the membership of the board shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment for the remainder of the unexpired term.

     c.    Members of the board shall serve without compensation but shall be entitled to be reimbursed for all reasonable and necessary expenses incurred in the discharge of their duties.

 

     3.    a.  The board shall establish a competitive application process for receipt of a S.E.E.D. grant that considers objective factors which shall include, but need not be limited to: the intellectual merit of the proposed project; the overall feasibility of the proposal; and the qualifications of the applicant.  A successful proposal shall address the use of the S.E.E.D. grant toward the sustainability of the project, either through strengthening the student's application for upcoming State, federal, or foundation grants, or for development of a self-sustaining program through fee-for-services or generation of receipt revenue.    

     b.    The board shall award S.E.E.D. grants from the fund established pursuant to section 4 of this act to qualified applicants enrolled in each public institution of higher education, within the limits of available funds allocated to each institution.  The board shall determine the amount of each grant awarded under the program and may award multi-year grants.

 

     4.    a.  There is hereby created a special fund in the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education which shall be entitled the "S.E.E.D. Fund."  The fund shall be maintained in a separate account and administered by the board established pursuant to section 2 of this act.  The monies in the fund shall be used to provide S.E.E.D. grants.

     b.    The fund shall consist of all moneys appropriated by the State for the purposes of the fund and all interest and investment earnings received on moneys in the fund.

 

     5.    In each of the first three years of the S.E.E.D. Program, the State shall appropriate to the S.E.E.D. Fund for each public institution of higher education an amount equal to the sum of $2,500 x (ENRF / 500) and $2,500 x (ENRP / 1,000), where ENRF is the number of full-time students enrolled in the institution, and ENRP is the number of part-time students enrolled in the institution. 

     In the event that the funds available for an institution of higher education are not awarded as S.E.E.D. grants in any of the first three years of the program, the board may either allocate those funds to the institution in a subsequent year or reallocate those funds to other institutions of higher education. 

     In each subsequent year, the State appropriations to the S.E.E.D. Fund for each institution shall be determined with consideration of the outcomes of the projects of the prior years' grantees.  In the event that an independent institution of higher education opts to participate in the program, a State appropriation shall be made to the fund in accordance with the guidelines established herein.    

 

     6.    The board shall submit a report to the Governor, and to the Legislature pursuant to section 2 of P.L.1991, c.164 (C.52:14-19.1), four years after the establishment of the S.E.E.D. Program.  The report shall include, but need not be limited to, information on the number of applicants, the number of awards, and a description of the proposals for and outcomes of each grant awarded.   

 

     7.    This act shall take effect immediately.

STATEMENT

 

     This bill establishes a "Supporting Educational and Entrepreneurial Development (S.E.E.D.) Program" in the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education.  The purpose of the S.E.E.D. Program will be to support original student-led projects through the awarding of grants.  Awards made through the program will provide the initial funding necessary to support the development of promising new concepts, products, or companies led by the next generation of researchers. 

     Under the bill, the S.E.E.D. Program will be implemented by a seven member board that includes the Secretary of Higher Education, or a designee; a representative of the New Jersey Business and Industry Association; and five public members.  The board will establish a competitive application process for receipt of a S.E.E.D. grant that considers objective factors which include, but need not be limited to: the intellectual merit of the proposed project; the overall feasibility of the proposal; and the qualifications of the applicant.  The bill directs the board to award S.E.E.D. grants from the fund to qualified applicants enrolled in each public institution of higher education, within the limits of available funds.  The board will determine the amount of each grant awarded under the program and may award multi-year grants.

     The bill creates a special fund in the Office of the Secretary of Higher Education entitled the "S.E.E.D. Fund," consisting of all moneys appropriated by the State for the purposes of the program and all interest and investment earnings received on moneys in the fund.  The fund will be used to provide S.E.E.D. grants.  The bill provides that in each of the first three years of the S.E.E.D. Program, the State must appropriate to the S.E.E.D.  Fund for each public institution of higher education an amount equal to $2,500 per each 500 full-time student cohort and $2,500 per each 1,000 part-time student cohort.  In the event that the funds available to an institution are not awarded as S.E.E.D. grants in any of the first three years of the program, the board may either allocate those funds to the institution in subsequent years or reallocate those funds to other institutions of higher education. 

     Under the bill, in each subsequent year, the State appropriations to the S.E.E.D. Fund for each institution will be determined with consideration of the outcomes of the projects of prior years' grantees.  In the event that an independent institution of higher education opts to participate in the program, a State appropriation must be made to the fund in accordance with the guidelines established herein.   

     Finally, the bill directs the board to submit a report to the Governor, and the Legislature four years after the establishment of the S.E.E.D. Program on its implementation and outcomes. 

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