Jackson Laboratory's plans to come to Collier County remain on track with county leaders deciding to make a short-term loan to the project while they wait for the fate of state funding.Voting in favor of JAX was Commissioner Jim Coletta, who represents the district containing Ave Maria. I don't know whether Mr. Coletta is Catholic, but his bio says that he went to Notre Dame High School in Elmira, N.Y., and he did make some noise about JAX's connection to embryonic stem cell research. From an earlier Naples News article:
The Collier County Commission voted 4-1 Tuesday, with Commissioner Tom Henning casting the dissenting vote, to have staff draw up a first-year loan of $28 million to Jackson so lab officials can continue working to bring more business partners to a future biomedical park near Ave Maria.
At a recent commission meeting, Coletta expressed concern about Jackson potentially doing research some day using embryonic stem cells. He asked [Commission Chairman Fred] Coyle if the lab would commit to not using embryonic stem cells; Coyle responded that would be a deal-breaker.Based on that last argument, I guess that means Ave Maria should invite abortion mills and strip clubs, because if not, they might go to other "secular" communities with lower standards.
In Maine, Coletta said Jackson officials explained they can't commit to what lab leaders in the future may want to do or not do.
"They do have an ethics council in place and are willing to put one in Naples with members of the community to weigh in," he said.
From another standpoint, Coletta said, if Jackson doesn't go to the Ave Maria location, it could go "in a secular community that may not have the same standards."
When it comes to asking JAX to commit to not using embryonic stem cells, isn't it heart-breaking to see Coletta's principles fall so quickly by the wayside upon meeting opposition? Show some backbone, man! The Diocese of Venice was counting on you!