Sep 11, 2017
Big EB-5 News: Regional Center Program to Be Extended Without Change to December 8; New Regulations May be Finalized by April 2018 (UPDATED)
By Matthew Galati
On the legislative front, this year continues to mirror the previous two, as the EB-5 Regional Center program is virtually certain to be granted a short-term extension until December 8, 2017. There are no substantive changes to be made to the EB-5 requirements.
Specifically, the program is to be extended through the H.R.601 - Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018 and Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Requirements Act, 2017 which passed both the U.S. House and Senate by overwhelming margins. The President is expected to sign the bill into law as the extension is part of a larger package where he backed Democratic Party proposals to keep the U.S. government funded and paying its bills. Notably, Congress could enact EB-5 reforms before December 8 as it is poised to take up immigration reform following the announcement that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) would be wound down.
Separate from the legislative front, we have also been covering proposed Administrative EB-5 reforms which would be effectuated through the regulatory process. In the past week, the Office of Management and Budget provided an updated timeline for rulemaking indicating that a finalized regulation will be published in April 2018. The substance of the finalized regulation – virtually certain to raise investment amounts and change the process of targeted employment area designations – remains unclear.
Our “crystal ball” predicting when reforms will be in place, and what those reforms will be, is still very cloudy. It is important to keep in mind that (1) the regulatory reforms could be published earlier than in April 2018; (2) the rule will almost certainly not go into effect the first day it is published; and (3) further complicating the regulatory process is the possibility of preemptive Congressional action, as discussed above. Accordingly, we recommend that prospective investors contact us soon to discuss their plans and evaluate whether EB-5 immigration is right for their families.
UPDATE: President Trump has signed the extension into law.