During his speech on January 29 in Las Vegas, President Obama announced his principles for Comprehensive Immigration Reform. As part of the president’s plan to overhaul the current broken immigration system, he noted the need to make permanent the EB-5 Regional Center Program that is currently set to expire on September 30, 2015. The program was introduced in 1992 and implemented in 1993. Since that time, it has continually been reauthorized by Congress on a temporary basis.
The president’s objectives related to the program include:
- Expanding opportunities for investor visas and continued U.S. economic development
- Permanently authorizing the EB-5 regional center program
- Providing incentives for visa requestors to invest in programs that support national priorities, including economic development in rural and economically distressed regions
- The introduction of new measures to combat fraud and national security threats within the program
- Data collection on the economic impact of the program nationally and locally
- The creation of a pilot program for state and local government officials to promote economic development.