EB5 Investors Magazine | Page 43

What it means: One of the most widespread criticisms of the EB-5 program is its potential for fraud. Senator Grassley and certain news outlets are quick to point out a few outlying cases as evidence that the program itself is corrupt. This section of the bill identifies and addresses the issue by creating and enforcing a higher standard for regional center operators and representatives. The lengthy list of disqualifying determinations will aid in controlling the quality of regional center administrators coming into the program, decrease the likelihood of fraud and criminal activity. Past Legislation Still Awaiting Action While Congressmen Polis and Amodei’s bill was reintroduced this year, there may be other EB-5-related legislation that could be reintroduced this year. The following bills were introduced to past sessions of Congress: H.R.15 Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act, Sponsored by Congressman Joe Garcia (D-FL) Introduced in October 2013 after a 68-32 passing vote in the Senate as S. 744 The Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act (S. 744) was passed in the Senate with a 68-32 vote, with support from both parties, in 2013. The act’s EB-5 reforms were written by Senator Leahy and call for the permanent reauthorization of the EB-5 regional center program, regional center document pre-approval, enhanced Department of Homeland Security authority, and five-year TEA designations, among other reforms. H.R. 15 is the House of Representatives’ companion to S. 744. The bill was not called for a vote in the House of Representatives in 2014, and looks unlikely to be voted on in 2015. H.R. 2131, The SKILLS Act, Introduced by House Oversight Committee Chairman Congressman Darrell Issa (R-CA) with 22 Republican Sponsors, including House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) Introduced in May 2013 Like much recent EB-5 legislation, the SKILLS Act would make the EB-5 Regional Center Program permanent, in addition to expanding permanent residency limits, standardizing TEA designation regulations, and expanding DHS authority. After being assigned to and discharged from several committees, the last action related to the SKILLS Act was in December of 2014, when it was discharged from the Committee on Education and the Workforce and placed on the Union Calendar. H.R. 2131 represented one of the better chances for EB-5 program reform, but the bill was not voted on in the 113th Congress. ★ http://abcnews.go.com/US/whistleblowers-us-gave-visas-suspected-forgersfraudsters-criminals/story?id=28671577&singlePage=true 1 WWW.EB5INVESTORS.COM 41