In the wake of Congress failing to pass EB-5 legislation earlier this spring, IIUSA drafted a letter to U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) reaffirming its support for the proposed regulations issued in January 2017 (DHS Docket No. USCIS-2016-0006) and urging the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and USCIS to pass EB-5 reform through the regulatory process. The letter also outlines suggested changes to the proposed regulations that would make for meaningful reform to the Program while also maintaining the industry’s ability to bring necessary investment to communities around the country without completely stifling demand. The areas addressed in the letter specifically are minimum investment amounts and TEA definitions.
Kathy Nuebel Kovarik, Chief of the Office of Policy and Strategy at USCIS, addressed attendees at IIUSA’s 11th Annual EB-5 Advocacy Conference on April 23, 2018. Ms. Nuebel Kovarik maintained the agency’s plans to move forward with regulatory reform this year while giving insight, so IIUSA’s letter comes at an optimal time for consideration.
IIUSA continues to work towards a long-term and sustainable future for the EB-5 industry and is proud to be the industry’s only trade association providing education, professional development and advocacy for its members.
From the Letter:
On April 11, 2017, Invest in the USA (“IIUSA”), the largest EB-5 trade association, provided the attached letter to the Acting Chief, Regulatory Coordination Division (Ms. Deshommes) as solicited by the USCIS, for its thoughts on the Proposed Regulations (“April Letter”). IIUSA’s response represented the compiled insights, comments, and suggestions of well-established and geographically diverse stakeholders in the EB-5 community. The April Letter made many comments on the Proposed Regulations. At the time we hoped and believed that Congress would act and pass sweeping reform of the EB-5 program. We further believed such legislation would provide further guidance to the USCIS and the EB-5 stakeholders concerning Congress’s intent about the EB-5 program.
Unfortunately, Congress failed to enact an EB-5 reform bill, which further increases the importance of issuing reasonable and workable regulations to help reform the program. This letter reaffirms our support of all recommendations in the April Letter while providing additional economic rationale for using a TEA investment amount of $800,000 and a Minimum Investment Amount of $1,000,000 as discussed on pages 16-19 of the April Letter.
IIUSA believes it is appropriate for USCIS to make changes by Regulation. The statute specifically empowers USCIS (DHS) to make changes which are difficult to make in a legislative environment.