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When The EB-5 Regional Center Program Resumes, We Will Be ReadyAugust 6, 2021

CMB Regional Centers’ (CMB) view on the reauthorization of the EB-5 Regional Center Program is discussed as well as thoughts on why prospective investors should use this time to perform due diligence on potential EB-5 projects and begin their source of funds work with their immigration attorneys.

DALLAS, August 6, 2021 (Rock Island, IL) -- On June 30, 2021, the EB-5 Regional Center Program (EB-5 Program) expired after many in the industry thought there would be reauthorization through the EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act (Senate Bill S.831 or the “Bill”), which had bipartisan support from Senators Grassley (R- Iowa) and Leahy (D – Vermont). When the Bill was proposed on the Senate floor for a unanimous consent vote through the hotline procedure, Senator Lindsay Graham objected and therefore it did not pass. This was a shock to the many in the industry, since it appeared the legislation was going to pass based on chatter coming out of Congressional offices.

This came shortly after another unexpected development in EB-5, when U.S. District Court Judge, Jacqueline Scott Corley, ruled in favor of Behring Co. in a lawsuit challenging Trump Era changes to the EB-5 regional center program (Behring Regional Center LLC v. Wolf et al). This ruling vacated the Nov. 2019 regulations that raised the minimum investment amount for EB-5 from $500,000 to $900,000 and the definition of a Targeted Employment Area (TEA) reverted back to what it was before the 2019 regulations. When the world found out about this ruling, with only one week before the EB-5 Program lapsed, EB-5 investors raced to invest into EB-5 regional center projects at the previous lower $500,000 investment amount. The USCIS also published a statement on June 22, 2021 through an alert on their website that confirms that the regulations were vacated and that they will apply the regulations that were in effect prior to Nov. 21, 2019. Alert: https://www.uscis.gov/working-in-the-united-states/permanent-workers/eb-5-immigrant-investor-program

“CMB and other industry leaders as well as trade organizations like IIUSA continue to work with law makers to get a reauthorization of the program,” said Noreen Hogan, President of CMB Regional Centers. “We currently have a long line of prospective EB-5 investors waiting for the program to get reauthorized, so they can move forward with their immigration pursuit. CMB will continue to have the same high quality projects available once the program is reauthorized, no matter what the rules look like. CMB can say that because we have always been able to offer high quality EB-5 investment opportunities that complied with the rules; we have successfully raised investors at the non-TEA investment threshold and we have always ensured our projects met the strict definition of what was required and intended by congress for a project to qualify as a true high unemployment area (TEA).  As a matter of fact, CMB has anticipated and adapted to new TEA changes previously to ensure that projects in the market place would not only qualify as a TEA under current rules, but would also qualify under any pending or new definitions of a TEA.  Being at the forefront of changes, adapting, and protecting our investors is what we do.”

This court ruling was great news for EB-5 investors from all around the world looking to access the program at the lower dollar amount, but since June 30th the EB-5 Regional Center  program is still currently expired, and prospective investors are wondering what they should do now. The simple answer is: take this time to conduct proper due diligence on regional centers, EB-5 projects, and immigration attorneys. All three of these choices require careful consideration and could lead to your family’s EB-5 success, or the failure of your immigration pursuit, if you choose the wrong one. CMB Regional Centers will be ready when the program is reauthorized, will you?

CMB has been involved in EB-5 since 1997, when CMB Export, LLC was first authorized as an EB-5 regional center. Over the past 24 years, CMB has seen many program extension and changes to the program. This has never effected how CMB operates. We have always been a forward thinking company and believe change is good, as long as it improves the EB-5 program and makes it safer for the EB-5 investors’ families looking to immigrate to the United States. CMB has always maintained a conservative approach when selecting projects, adhering closely to existing EB-5 regulations. When we undertook projects located in parts of the country that did not qualify as a true TEA, they were offered at the higher $1M investment level.  There are likely to be many EB-5 projects available if the program receives a short term extension under older regulations. Before you race into a project that might not have good merits or a high chance of success, make sure you conduct thorough due diligence. Here are some questions to ask:

Questions to ask regional centers and attorneys:

  • How many EB-5 investments has your company created and successfully filled?

  • How many of them have been approved by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)? Can you prove it? Have any been denied?

  • How many investor families have received an I-526 approval? How many have received an I-829 approval? How many have received a return on their investment?

  • Are you and the developer affiliated in any way? If so, how?

  • How many EB-5 petitions have you and your firm filed? How many have been approved? How many have been denied? If denied, why?

  • For more ideas on what to ask click here.


What’s next for the EB-5 regional center program?

The regional center program has seen many extensions throughout the past 30 years and has experienced a few short lapses in congressional authorization. We at CMB are confident that the program will get reauthorized and possibly we will see a clean extension that will provide prospective investors with a short window at the $500K level, but more than likely we will see new legislation with a dollar amount greater than $500K.

Therefore, if you are looking to immigrate to the U.S. through an EB-5 investment, start your due diligence now. There will be many regional centers pushing projects that were stalling because of the new regulations. Therefore, if there are changes to the program, it could have the same effect of the viability of their project. CMB will be ready no matter what the rules are, make sure you are too. Remember to ask the question that were previously provided in this article.

CMB currently has projects in the queue to accept EB-5 investors once the program is reauthorized. These projects have undergone the same vigorous underwriting process that all 70+ approved CMB projects have went through, with a 100% project approval rate from the USCIS. The project is a single senses track TEA that would qualify under the strictest TEA requirements. CMB continues to be the leader in the industry, by working with the same industry leading developers that we have worked with in the past.

CMB’s Group 80 (Group 80) will be the newest project that will be ready for investors to move forward once the program is reauthorized. Group 80 will loan EB-5 funds for the development and construction of a pre-leased distribution warehouse facility in Homestead, FL, that is within the Miami, FL metropolitan area. This will serve as a distribution hub for a Top 10 Fortune 500 e-commerce giant that is looking for more warehousing space in the Miami area. Hillwood Development Company (Hillwood) will serve as the developer of this project and has already secured a 180 month (15 year) lease with the tenant. CMB and Hillwood have a long history of success and have partnered 32 times before. This regional center developer relationship has proven successful at every benchmark: I-526 petition approval, I-829 petition approval, repayment of loaned EB-5 capital and investors that have made it full circle to receive a return of their investment capital.

CMB has been involved in EB-5 since 1997 when Pat Hogan, CMB’s CEO and Founder, received approval to take on projects in California through CMB Export, LLC our first USCIS approved regional center. Since 1997, CMB has undertaken nearly 80 EB-5 projects, which have helped over 5,700 investor families with their immigration goals of living permanently in the U.S. CMB has been in business for over 24 years and will continue to serve our investors for many more under the leadership of Noreen Hogan, CMB’s President.

If you would like more information about CMB, the EB-5 program, or our projects that will be available for subscription once the program is reauthorized, please contact us at: www.cmbeb5visa.com; info@cmbeb5visa.com; or +1-309-797-1550

CMB engages Prevail Capital, LLC, a broker-dealer registered with the SEC and a member of FINRA and SIPC, to be the administrative placement agent for all CMB EB-5 partnerships.
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