IIUSA Submits Letter to USCIS on Redesignation of Regional Centers

03.22.22 | Government Affairs

Earlier this week, IIUSA submitted a letter to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) regarding the repeal of section (§ 610) of the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1993 (8 U.S.C. 1153 note) (“§ 610 Repeal”) as part of the 2022 EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act.

In the letter the association notes industry concern surrounding one potential interpretation of this repeal which may call for Regional Centers to seek re-designation via a new application with USCIS and/or wait until receiving approval on a new application before resuming operations.

It is our opinion that this potential interpretation could have disastrous impacts on the Regional Center Industry and we requested a meeting with the agency to ensure its potential impacts are understood and any negative outcomes are avoided. We are confident that the recent renewal of the EB-5 Program breaths new life into the Program and more importantly into the numerous communities it serves. We are also confident that USCIS wants to see the Program succeed and we look forward to a continued dialogue with the agency.

Alissa Emmel, Chief
Immigrant Investor Program Office
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service
131 M Street, Northeast
Washington, DC 20529

Via Electronic Mail To: Alissa.Emmel@USCIS.DHS.gov

RE: Regional Center Program Reauthorization Issue: Redesignation of Regional Centers

Dear Chief Emmel,

We at IIUSA are relieved and exuberant about the Regional Center Program’s recent multi-year reauthorization contained in the 2022 EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act (“RIA”). Among the many items on which we hope to engage with you in implementing the RIA requires immediate attention occasioning this letter: the impact of the repeal of section §610 of the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1993 (8 U.S.C. 1153 note) (“§ 610 Repeal”).

We are concerned that at least one interpretation of § 610 Repeal may call for existing regional centers to seek re-designation by filing a new application with the USCIS under the RIA, or more disastrously, awaiting approval of such a new application before resuming operations.

This interpretation would vitiate the purpose of the RIA, as the Regional Center Program would likely sunset again in 2027 before all the regional centers are so re-designated. This result would put in doubt the status of all existing EB-5 investors, their associated regional centers, and regional center-sponsored projects, reinstating the limbo of the past 8 months as if the Program were not reauthorized at all. The unanimously-supported “grandfathering” provisions would likewise have no meaning if those cases could not proceed because unaffiliated with any designated regional center.

Accordingly, we respectfully and urgently seek immediate clarification that existing regional centers remain in good standing until and unless terminated. Alternatively, we are in support of an attestation filing on the Form I-924A or Form I-924 that will maintain existing regional centers’ designations intact unless and until terminated by USCIS.

IIUSA respectfully asks for your immediate attention and for the opportunity to meet with you to discuss this matter as needed. We are available at your disposal.


Aaron L. Grau
Executive Director
Invest in the USA (IIUSA)


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