Today, the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary held an oversight hearing on the Immigrant Investor EB-5 program. The well-attended full committee hearing focused on reported fraud within the current program and the path forward for EB-5. The sole witness was USCIS Director Francis Cissna.
There were a few takeaways from the hearing, including:
- Director Cissna indicated that the proposed EB-5 Modernization and Regional Center regulations may take beyond the current September program authorization date to accomplish. He indicated that other agency priorities are competing for USCIS resources at the current time.
- When asked by Sen. Graham (R-SC) if he supported the EB-5 program, Director Cissna responded, “it’s lawful.”
- Director Cissna stated that without needed reforms to the program, he would recommend “letting it expire.”
- Director Cissna also advocated for legislative reform to address needed authorities for USCIS and to make programmatic changes.
The Members seemed open to reform legislation and continuation of the program citing the economic success of EB-5 in their states.
The hearing was extended due to extraneous discussion of the Administration’s “Zero Tolerance” border policies.