Dear EB-5 Stakeholders,
As everyone involved with the EB-5 Industry knows, this reauthorization is like no other we have ever faced. Our typical legislative vehicle for convenient extension is gone. The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 extended the current EB-5 Regional Center Program authorization through June 30, 2021, decoupling it from the omnibus, the government’s annual spending bill.
Where many see a challenge, I see an opportunity. The objective of congressional decoupling was to bring attention to a program that otherwise sits among a diverse group of programs awaiting tacit approval each budget cycle. It was not decoupled to die, but to live and to be seen. I have confidence in the power of our program and the difference it has made in our communities. Our advocates are numerous and diverse and we have countless positive stories to uncover and share with our united voices. Together our future is bright!
We still have the same bipartisan support we have always had, but we will soon have a vehicle to get us to long-term reauthorization. Senators Grassley and Leahy plan to introduce an integrity reform bill to improve the EB-5 program by achieving long-sought protections for our investors and eliminating bad actors from program involvement. With these improvements, Congress will see the program the way it was intended, the way all of you good stewards use it. This will open doors to expand and make the program more accessible. The bill, as presented at the end of 2020, has overwhelming bipartisan support and will positively impact communities across the United States while protecting our valued investors from around the world. And this couldn’t come at a better time. On our shores, we now, more than ever, sorely need economic development to recover from the pandemic and we do not have the luxury of time to wait for comprehensive immigration reform which may take years to pass.
In addition, all the way across the ocean, our investors who have already placed their investments in our communities, wait for conditional green cards and the certainty of a long-term authorization.
IIUSA heartily supports this legislation as the only path to long-term authorization.
Once it passes, our program will be on solid ground for further policy debates around TEAs, additional visas, and investment amounts the industry desperately needs and wants.
In addition to the legislation, a new attitude has emerged in Washington, DC born from the new and motivated Biden Administration that prioritizes the importance of immigration for the United States. A strong possibility exists for visa recapture and a proper interpretation of derivatives, which would remove them from counting against the cap. There is even discussion about increasing visas in the Employment-Based categories which would be a huge win for EB-5. It is important to note; however, that being able to take advantage of these possible policy changes hinges on our ability to remain eligible, and thus our focus must remain on the EB-5-specific Grassley/Leahy legislative vehicle. IIUSA is working daily to advocate for and advance the program, representing its members’ interests and concerns to Congressional Offices.
We eagerly await the introduction of Senators Grassley’s and Leahy’s EB-5 bill. Once the bill is introduced, the EB-5 industry and its partners must rally behind it and be ready for a swift grassroots advocacy campaign. Be ready to contact your members of Congress and let them know you support this bill and that failing to pass it would result in billions of lost investment dollars and missed opportunities for tens of thousands of American jobs. Stay tuned to IIUSA emails and the IIUSA blog (www.IIUSA.org/blog) for updates as they become available.
We cannot let this opportunity slip through our hands. We have a beautiful story to tell and the stage is ours if we resonate in unison!
Robert W. Kraft
CEO, FirstPathway Partners
LEARN MORE ON IIUSA’S NEXT FREE EDUCATIONAL WEBINAR
Join EB-5 industry leaders next month as they discuss recent program changes, investor market trends, and of course the EB-5 legislative landscape ahead of the Program’s June 30, 2021 reauthorization deadline.
Registration is free for all IIUSA members, investors, and interested stakeholders. All you need to do is RSVP here.