On January 24 Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca), who for years has voiced her unfavorable opinion of the EB-5 investor program, filed a bill in the Senate that would essentially kill the program. Sen. Feinstein, the second ranking Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Committee, was joined on the bill by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa).
If passed, the bill would shut down the EB-5 program and split its allocated visas between the four remaining employment-based visa classifications.
The four programs to remain are: EB-1, for athletes, scientists, and executives; EB-2, those with advanced education; EB-3, skilled and unskilled workers; and EB-4, nationals who served the United States government. The caps on these four remaining programs would be raised by two percent.
Many changes appear to be inevitable for the EB-5 program. Fortunately, this proposal is unlikely to be one of them. The new bill could be characterized as a “political move” that probably won’t get signed into law. So the experts states they view the bill as a reaction to the stalled reforms.
Current proposed changes are to increase the minimum investment amounts from $1 million to $1.8 million and from $500,000 to 1.35 million for those who invest in TEA, and the reorganized targeted employment areas.