Friday, December 25, 2009

Job Creation

During an EB-5 stakeholders call, I heard an employee of USCIS say that jobs created outside a Regional Center's geographic area do not count (i.e., the jobs cannot be counted toward the 10 jobs that each investor must create, directly, indirectly, or induced, within a Regional Center).
This is astounding! How on Earth could anyone make such a statement with a straight face? If my Regional Center encompasses an area next to a county not within the geographic confines of my Regional Center, and it creates a job there, the job doesn't count? Give me a break!
We are working on some investment projects that are national in scope and create indirect and induced jobs all over the United States.
USCIS had better think through this quickly. Thousands of American jobs are riding on its interpretation of "job creation" within Regional Centers. And, as we all know -- and certainly USCIS should know -- the U.S. economy is not a pretty picture.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

America's Regional Center

There is a move afoot to re-brand the Alabama Regional Center, based upon its expansion into its four sister states.

While a case could be made that it is a Southeastern United States regional Center, the name the regional center will use is America's Center for Foreign Investment.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Proliferation of Regional Centers is not healthy

At last count -- November 8, 2009 -- there were 73 approved Regional Centers in the United States with dozens more applications pending -- meaning we are on track to have more than 100 Regional Centers by the end of the year.Most of these Regional Centers -- probably more than 95 percent -- will not lure EB-5 investors to their investment projects. The economy is still bad here even though the Asian markets are heating up.What I am worried about is whether we will see wild claims from more and more Regional Centers about their investment projects and about guaranteed returns on investment and guaranteed permanent green cards. We've seen it before and I am afraid we are destined to see it again if, for no other reason, than there are just so many Regional Centers out there trolling for the same pool of investors.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Significance of Alabama Regional Center expansion

The significance of the Alabama Regional Center expansion is that it is unprecedented and unique, but probably not for long. Multi-state regional centers -- such as the Gulf Coast regional center -- are not unique, but a regional center that has expanded into four contiguous states is. It was a step up for Alabama to seek to cross its state borders, and investment project developers drove the train. Alabama heard from developers in Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and Tennessee that they wanted to use the EB-5 Program and the Alabama Regional Center for partial or full financing but were disappointed that the center's geographic area did not encompass the area where they wanted to do a project. In fact, expansion of the Alabama Regional Center was a no-brainer. It needed to move to the investment activity, so that's what it did.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

EB-5 petitions approved

As of October 31, 2009, Alabama Regional Center Project I, LP, has 9 approved I-526 petitions. One is pending and there are six remaining subscriptions available to close the project -- a manufacturer of affordable, hurricane-resistant modular homes to bring families displaced by Hurricanes Katrina, Gustav and Ivan back to the Gulf Coast. These approvals represent an additional $4.5 million investment in Alabama to create jobs -- and it wasn't done with taxpayers' money! For more information, go to, or call +334.954.3111.

Alabama Regional Center expansion

On October 21, 2009, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services approved an amended application to extend the Alabama Regional Center's geographical boundaries beyond the state of Alabama.
In addition to Alabama's 67 counties and all 95 counties in the state of Tennessee, the Alabama Regional Center now covers 38 counties in Mississippi, 52 counties in Georgia, and 39 counties in north Florida.