This article fails to offer serious scrutiny of the EB-5 program and its application in Vermont.
There's no mention of the well-publicized controversy--in Vermont, and in EB-5 circles--in which Stenger's former visa broker publicly cut ties:
Nor is there mention of Stenger's savings: the value of a low-interest loan via EB-5 versus how much such financing would cost on the market. That should be factored into the public policy equation: the savings to the developer/entrepreneur vs. the perceived public benefit from new jobs/tax revenues.
As for whether the visa program allows rich foreigners to jump the line, Stenger's a rather self-serving authority. Of course, they're buying their way into the country.
Analysts like Michael Sandel think that's bad enough. Given that countries like Canada and Australia have somewhat similar programs, it's understandable why the U.S. competes.
One key difference: programs in Canada and Australia have the would-be immigrants buy plain vanilla government bonds, thus avoiding the Rube Goldberg-like EB-5 program, which generates big sums to the middlemen--lawyers, overseas brokers--and big savings to the entrepreneur.
Follow the money.
Pacific Park Brooklyn is seriously delayed, Forest City Realty Trust said yesterday in a news release, which further acknowledged that the project has caused a $300 million impairment, or write-down of the asset, as the expected revenues no longer exceed the carrying cost.
The Cleveland-based developer, parent of Brooklyn-based Forest City Ratner, which is a 30% investor in Pacific Park along with 70% partner/overseer Greenland USA, blamed the "significant impairment" on an oversupply of market-rate apartments, the uncertain fate of the 421-a tax break, and a continued increase in construction costs.
While the delay essentially confirms the obvious, given that two major buildings have not launched despite plans to do so, it raises significant questions about the future of the project, including:
if market-rate construction is delayed, will the affordable h…