RC reauthorization to 9/30/2017, Trump statements on reform
April 27, 2017
The regional center program is now authorized, as part of fiscal year 2017 Appropriations legislation, through September 30, 2017. Updates as they happened:
5/8/2017: In the wake of RC program reauthorization and the flap over an EB-5 project being promoted by the Kushner Companies, the White House has started issuing more EB-5 statements, which I’m collecting in this document.
5/5/2017: President Trump has signed the omnibus appropriations bill H.R. 244 – Senate Amendments to HIRE Vets Act [Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2017]. The text still includes clean extension of the regional center program to September 30, 2017 (Title III, Section 542).
5/1/2017: House Appropriations Committee press release: Comprehensive Government Funding Bill Released. The bill text includes this magic sentence on page 734: “SEC. 542. Section 610(b) of the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1993 (8 U.S.C. 1153 note) shall be applied by substituting ‘‘September 30, 2017’’ for ‘‘September 30, 2015’’. If passed, this will give simple extension of the Regional Center program authorization for the reminder of the fiscal year, with no other EB-5 program changes. (Section 610(b) of the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1993 (Public Law 102-395) established the regional center program, page 47.) Even assuming the bill will pass as-is, this is not time to relax. Congress could still come out with new independent EB-5 legislation at any time — nothing says they have to wait til the last reauthorization minute to act. Senator Cornyn’s office circulated a new discussion draft of EB-5 legislation just this morning. I’ve entered summary details in my bill comparison chart, and will add link to the full text as soon as someone posts the draft publicly.
4/28/2017: H.J.Res. 99 – Joint Resolution making further continuing appropriations for fiscal year 2017, and for other purposes has been passed and signed into law, extending government funding and other provisions of Public Law 114–223 (including the regional center program) to May 5, 2017.
4/27/2017: For the first time, I’ve noticed a statement from the Trump administration on EB-5. Washington Post says,
The White House issued a statement to The Washington Post this week saying that the Trump administration is weighing changes to the foreign investor visa program. “There are serious concerns held by the administration regarding the EB-5 visa program, in part because it is not being used as it was primarily intended,” said Michael Short, a White House spokesman. “The administration is continuing to evaluate reforms to the program, which we believe is in need of substantial repair.”
(Update: additional statements linked above at the 5/8/2017 bullet point.)
4/26/2017: House Appropriations Committee Press Release: “House Appropriations Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen today introduced a short-term Continuing Resolution (CR) (H.J.Res. 99) to continue funding for federal programs and services until May 5, 2017. …The legislation continues policy and funding provisions included in currently enacted fiscal year 2016 Appropriations legislation.” Here is the text of the CR. It’s set for vote on 4/28.
As a reminder, the history of recent regional center program reauthorizations:
12/10/2016 – RC program is extended unchanged to 04/28/2017 as part of a continuing appropriations act (PL 114-254)
9/29/2016 – RC program is extended unchanged to 12/09/2016 as part of a continuing appropriations act (PL 114-223)
12/8/2015 – RC program is extended unchanged to 9/30/2016 as part of an appropriations act (PL 114-113)
9/30/2015 – RC program is extended unchanged to 12/11/2015 as part of a continuing appropriations act (PL 114-53)
9/28/2012 – RC program is extended (with one small change) to 9/30/2015 as part of immigration-related legislation (PL 112-176)