New Jersey’s overall position with respect to venture capital – money invested in startup firms with anticipated high-growth potential – has weakened as of late.  According to the National Venture Capital Association, while ranking 13th in the nation in terms of investments, the state has experienced a steady decline in recent years, from $716 million invested in 2008 to $322.2 million in 2013, the lowest amount since 1995.  In May 2011, Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley signed into law InvestMaryland, a partnership between the state and private firms. Housed within the Maryland Venture Fund, InvestMaryland focuses on growth companies with an emphasis on such industries as software, life sciences, healthcare information technology and communications. InvestMaryland raised $84 million through a 2012 online auction of tax credits to 11 insurance companies with operations in the state.