Last month, we hosted the IIUSA EB-5 Regional Center Advocacy Conference, surrounding various EB-5 meetings with the federal government. I am pleased to provide the following summary.
Wednesday September 14, 2011
Meeting with Chairman of the House Judiciary, Honorable Representative Lamar Smith (TX)
Prior to the House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing later in the day, IIUSA leadership and hearing witnesses attended a meeting with the Honorable Chairman of the full House Judiciary Committee, Representative Lamar Smith (TX). We had the opportunity to present the EB-5 Regional Center story, in terms of economic development and U.S. job creation at no cost to the American taxpayer, and answer any questions that he had prior to the hearing.
Thanks to the excellent testimonies by EB-5 witnesses William J. Stenger (President/CEO, Jay Peak Resort; Director, IIUSA) and Daniel J. Healy (Managing Director, Civitas Capital – City of Dallas Regional Center; Member, IIUSA), the hearing was a success, with proceedings indicating continued bipartisan support for the EB-5 Regional Center Program. EB-5 witnesses told their stories of economic development, fielded questions about why foreign direct investment (FDI) is important in the 21st century economy, and how to deter improper use of the Program.
Later that afternoon, USCIS Director, Alejandro N. Mayorkas hosted an open dialogue with various Program stakeholders. Approximately 25 attended in person and many more listening in via teleconference. The meeting saw many IIUSA Members provide valuable feedback to the Director, who continues to look for ways to help this Program fulfill its potential. IIUSA remains supportive of his efforts and was pleased to have so much of his time and attention on this subject.
“IIUSA EB-5 Regional Center Economic Development Rooftop Reception”
That evening, IIUSA hosted a rooftop reception, with breathtaking views of Capitol Hill, on top of 300 New Jersey Ave NW. Representative Dan Boren (OK) was in attendance, along with staffers from various Congressional offices, including Judiciary Committee leadership.
Thursday September 15, 2011
IIUSA EB-5 Regional Center Advocacy Conference
Over breakfast, sponsored by Wright Johnson, LLC, the morning was kicked off by keynote speaker Aaron Brickman, Deputy Director, SelectUSA (the multi-agency executive initiative to attract job-creating FDI into the U.S.). He spoke of EB-5 in the context of FDI and the importance of FDI in the 21st century globalized economy.
Following breakfast, attendees heard the latest updates and development with USCIS EB-5 policy, highlighting the meeting with the Director the day before and preparing attendees for the quarterly meeting with USCIS that afternoon. That panel featured:
- Robert C. Divine, IIUSA Vice President
- H. Ronald Klasko, AILA EB-5 Committee Chair
- Joseph C. McCarthy, IIUSA Legislative Committee Chair
Attendees then got a full legislative and advocacy update from IIUSA leadership and government affairs team, with a panel featuring:
- K. David Andersson, IIUSA President
- Russell Cartwright, IIUSA Government Affairs
- Tom Loeffler, IIUSA Government Affairs
- Stephen Yale-Loehr, IIUSA President Emeritus