Wednesday, March 21, 2018
On March 20, 2018, Invest in the USA (IIUSA) issued a statement (https://iiusa.org/blog/iiusa-statement-missed-opportunity/)on the United States EB-5 program’s failure to receive bicameral support and would not be included in the upcoming federal funding bill, which Congress must pass by this Friday March 23. The possible inclusion of program reform and long-term extension in the omnibus bill had brought hopes to the EB-5 industry earlier in March. IIUSA revealed that the proposed reforms did “not gather support from all industry organizations”.
Even though failed to reform program and obtain long-term reauthorization, the draft bill has still included provisions for another temporary EB-5 program extension through September 30, 2018.
Thursday, March 8, 2018
This month, members of Congress made a draft proposal to reform the EB-5 Program. The proposals, called the Immigrant Investor Visa and Regional Center Program Comprehensive Reform Act (EB-5 Reform Act), if passed, would be included with the government-spending bill on March 23.
Important aspects of the draft of the EB-5 Reform Act include:
• Re-authorization of the EB-5 Regional Center Program until 2023.
• Improvement and streamlining of the EB-5 process.
• Potential protections for investors whose projects did not pan out.
• 3,100 visas will be carved out from the 10,000 total number of EB-5 visas as set aside for several incentive categories.
• USCIS will not accept more petitions than that year’s quota. If, for instance, the quota is only 2,300, then that’s the maximum number of petitions they will accept that year.
• Minimum investment amount increase from $500,000 to either $925,000 or $1,025,000.
• Less strict targeted employment area proposals.
• Filing fee increases.
• An increase in the number of jobs that are required to be created from 10 to 12.
• The ability to count construction jobs as direct permanent jobs regardless of the duration of the jobs.
• Immediately after the bill is passed, no new EB-5 applications (I-526 Petitions) would be accepted for 120 days.
S Lazicki. (2018, March 11). EB-5 Reform Act, RC List Changes [Blog Post]. Retried from https://blog.lucidtext.com/category/eb-5-law-policy/
Wolfsdorf Rosenthal LLP. (2018, March 13). 10 Things to Know About the New EB-5 Reform Act. Retrieved from https://wolfsdorf.com/blog/10-things-to-know-about-the-new-eb-5-reform-act/
Friday, January 26, 2018
The EB-5 visa usage for Vietnamese applicants jumped 190% year-over-year from October to December 2017. Since almost half of the annual EB-5 visa allocations for Vietnam (approximately 700) has already been used in the first quarter of the current fiscal year, the Visa Office predicts that Vietnam will face over subscription by April , at which time a Final Action Date will be required.
Nearly 45% of EB-5 visas available to Vietnamese nationals in Fiscal Year (F) 2018 (312 out of 697) had already been issued by the end of the first quarter, that is from October 1, 2017 – December 31, 2017.
The DOS has indicated in the February 2018 Visa Bulletin that the Vietnam EB-5 category “will become subject to a Final Action Date no later than April. The China-mainland born, and Vietnam employment fifth preference dates would be the same.” The China Final Action Date is currently July 22, 2014, meaning Chinese investors who filed before this date can get final green card interviews, or file to adjust status. Once Vietnam becomes subject to the same date as China, any of the demand for EB-5 visas from Vietnamese nationals that cannot be allocated for the remainder of the fiscal year (based on DOS’ predictions) will be held in “pending” status.
Each country has less than 700 visas available annually for Vietnam. When one country uses all its available visas (like China for EB-5), applicants from those countries may be allocated unused visas available from the worldwide limit. Any excess EB-5 visas available to oversubscribed countries will be issued based on an investor’s priority date. Unfortunately, because there are so many Chinese investors with earlier priority dates, the Vietnamese will need to wait for those Chinese investors to clear first, or until the new annual limit becomes available at the beginning of FY 2019 (October 1, 2018).
Friday, December 22, 2017
With just hours to spare in order to avoid a government shutdown, the House and Senate approved on December 21 a short-term continuing resolution (CR) funding federal activities through January 19. The CR was approved in the House in a 231-188 vote, and in the Senate by a vote of 66-32. With passage of the CR, Congress has departed for the holiday break and is set to return on January 3. The CR extends the current authorization for the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program while congressional leadership and interested stakeholders continue to negotiate a long-term measure to reform and reauthorize the program. A long-term reauthorization is unlikely to move as a stand-alone bill and could be included in any spending measure approved in January. Another option for a legislative vehicle would be immigration reform legislation, which has been highlighted by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) as an opportunity for bipartisan cooperation in 2018.
The National Law Review
Monday, November 6, 2017
The question on everybody’s mind is will the EB-5 investment amount be increased soon and what will the new amount be?
A so called the “last, best, and final offer” proposal from the judiciary leadership of the House and Senate has just been revealed. During recent weeks, Chairman Grassley and Chairman Goodlatte worked diligently with participants representing urban and rural interests to develop the “last, best, and final offer”, This latest proposal comes out a one-page term sheet proposes replacing the current Targeted Employment Area (TEA) system with a Rural/Urban Distressed (R/UD) designation. The minimal investment amount for R/UD areas set as $925,000, whereas it would be $1.025 million for other areas. Fortunately, the increase of the investment amount is not retroactive.
The information from Washington D.C. is that negotiations in the Senate continue. It looks like the investment amount will increase; the question is how soon, if raised, when will the new amount become effective? On enactment, or at a later date to allow regional centers and developers to adjust their offerings?
Information obtained from various sources and EB5 news.
Tuesday, June 20, 2017
Henderson Le, The Prime Group Inc.
The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2017, passed by Congress and signed May 7, extends the EB-5 immigrant investor visa program through September 30, 2017. There are two key bills that have been presented on the Senate floor. One is the Grassley Bill, mainly contributed by Senators Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Patrick Leahy (D-VT), the other bill was proposed by Senators John Cornyn (R-Texas). The two bills represent key differences in the rural/urban interests.
The first point of difference lays on the actual definition of the TEA. The Grassley Bill promotes a very restrictive approach. It only includes existing census tract and pushes for federal regulations on TEA appointments. The Cornyn Bill is more expansive in its TEA definition and designation. The Cornyn Bill also promotes to exclude derivatives, thus increasing the effective visa count by almost three times.
The minimum amount of investment is being hugely discussed as well. Both bills initially agree to a minimum of $800,000 investment for TEA and $1,000,000 for non-TEA. Nevertheless, recently, Grassley has proposed to fully adopt the proposed regulations proposed by DHS under President Obama that would create a minimum threshold to $1,350,000 for TEA, $1,800,000 for non-TEAs.
Grandfathering will be highly likely for all cases that filed I-526 petitions prior to the passage of the bill. Nevertheless, Grassley bill has not mentioned anything about grandfathering for projects, while Cornyn bill allows a certain period of phase in.
Source: Arnstein & Lehr LLP – Ronald R. Fieldstone
Friday, April 28, 2017
A Continuing Resolution (CR) has been approved to serve as a vehicle to extend government operations. Congress has decided the EB-5 policy will extend once again until the end of the Fiscal Year, by September 30, 2017.
We recommend you to contact an immigration attorney to learn more about EB-5 and their expectations in regards to the law change.
Since the investment process may take some time, contact us today to learn more about our projects!
Friday, April 7, 2017 – Henderson Le
Reforms to the EB-5 Immigrant Program is, once again, being due on April 28th. Nevertheless, changes likely won’t come in time. Democrats and Republicans can’t agree on how the program should be changed, even within the party. Given the looming deadline, it is more likely that at least one more short-term extension will be issued.
A few significant issues being discussed for reforms include raising the required investment amounts and introducing more oversight to reduce incidents of sponsor fraud or misappropriated funds. The investment amounts have remained the same since the program was introduced in 1990, so there is discussion about raising those amounts and ongoing debate on how much they should rise and when increases should go into effect.
One of the biggest complaints about EB-5 is that some projects qualify for the lower $500,000 investment due to cobbling together a series of census tracts in order to come up with the high unemployment numbers required for an area to be designated as a TEA. EB-5 investors have a choice between about 500 active EB-5 projects around the country, so it is no surprise that they are gravitating to high-profile developments in major metros. Before any changes take effect, investors still have the opportunity and privilege to select one of the best locations on an EB5 project offered by the Prime Group Inc.
The Canopy by Hilton is set to start construction in 2017, located in the center of Chicago downtown, and situated next to the Federal Reserve Bank, 1.5 block from the Chicago Board of Trade, and 2 blocks from the Willis Tower, the second tallest building in America, is a rare find and a secure investment for EB5 investors. This project having short-term construction period and the creation of 1,122 jobs help investors to obtain green card qualification in the shortest time possible allowed by USCIS. Please contact our agents for more details.
*Source of information taken from article from National Real Estate Investor written by Beth Mattson-Teig, 04-04-2017.
Thursday, February 9, 2017
By Henderson Le, Prime Group.
Sens. Tom Cotton, left, and David Perdue are teaming up with the White House to introduce legislation to restrict legal immigration. (CHRIS KLEPONIS & DREW ANGERER/GETTY IMAGES)
Sens. Tom Cotton of Arkansas and Sens. David Perdue of Georgia proposed to reduce legal immigration from 1 million to 500,000 green cards per year.
The bill, “Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act” (RAISE Act), aims to limit the number of family-based visas so that only spouses and unmarried minor children of citizens and permanent residents can get green cards. The bill will not allow children to apply green card for their parents, as well brothers and sisters. This will stop the “maternity green card trip” which arranges for the foreign mother to bear children in the US. The children will grant green card for the parents when they are 18.
Nevertheless, if the elderly parents require special assistant from the children due to health issues, a renewable visa can be granted to parents. This visa does not grant them the permission to work, nor can they receive public benefits. The parents have to show guaranteed support of health insurance by the sponsoring children. There is no path to citizenship for the parents.
The two Senators also eliminate the diversity visa lottery that doles out 50,000 green cards a year and set a 50,000 cap on green cards for refugees.
There is no mention about EB-5 investors program in this bill. The administration is strangely mum on words about investor visa, as opposed to every other visa programs.
Unlike the past eight years, when debate centered on legalizing illegal immigrants and drawing in more legal migrants, the conversation under President Trump is likely to focus more on imposing limits.
The bill is expected to be passed by the majority of Republicans on the Senate floor.
Source: U.S.News, CNBC
The hotel is the world’s largest Residence Inn, with 381 rooms. On hand for the hotel’s grand opening in November were Arne M. Sorenson, president and chief executive officer of Marriott International, Inc.; Tommie L. Van, General Manager of Residence Inn Marriott. and Michael W. Reschke, chairman and CEO of The Prime Group, Inc. An affiliate of The Prime Group owns the property.
Read more with the links below …