Maryland Governor William Schaefer hopes to encourage more high-tech entrepreneurship in his state with a $15 million seed-capital fund he proposed to his state's General Assembly last month. The plan calls for a pool of money - mostly from public pension funds - that would be invested in venture capital firms; these firms would match the state investment and provide capital for high-tech startups. J. Randall Evans, secretary of the Maryland Department of Economic Development, says there could be many Maryland scientists ready to jump into the marketplace: "We've got an awful lot of smart people doing public-funded basic research here, and now it's time to make it possible to commercialize it." Schaefer's plan encourages the state's counties to invest one half of 1% of their pension funds in the venture pool. Unlikely to participate in the pool, however, is the $8.5 billion State Retirement and Pension Systems Fund. Howard...

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