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EB-5 has gotten yet another short-term extension; Congress seems inattentive

EB-5 is alive, but for developers and investors future remains uncertain, the Real Deal reported 10/1/18 regarding the program in which immigrant investors park money in a project that purportedly creates ten jobs per $500,000 investment:
Developer demand has fallen, and backlogs in issuing those green cards has created investor uncertainty. The program, which was scheduled to expire Sept. 30, received a reprieve Friday from President Trump, but only through Dec. 7. 
Moreover, Congress has not addressed the need to update the law, which further dampens enthusiasm. Interestingly, real estate developers "have been weaning themselves off EB-5 money," there's still a demand from investors, especially from China, to park $500,000 in a low- or no-interest investment that will get them green cards.

The article suggests that bad news about fraud and abuse has damaged the program. As I've suggested, the program is inherently flawed--and doesn't create jobs--if the developers don't actually need the money.

Why ignore EB-5?

Suzanne Lazicki, who writes a blog about EB-5 (and business plans for projects), created a pretty astounding chart that shows how, in the last few years, EB-5 has been precariously extended. And while the extension is through 12/7/18, the House won't even reconvene until November 13.

Wrote Lazicki:
I speculate that Washington will persevere in ignoring and avoiding EB-5 because immigrant investment presents an inconvenient reminder that immigrants can bring a wealth of resources – even hard-to-deny resources such as dollars, economic growth, and job creation. There’s a will to brand immigrants as dangerous takers, and EB-5 investors contradict that image. Unfortunately, the EB-5 program still suffers – ignored by the right, and castigated by the left for being ignored even as new policies particularly harass materially-poor immigrants.
She may be right that EB-5 doesn't fit typical frames. But I look at it differently: that EB-5, however a plausible concept, has been distorted so the profits go to the middlemen and those receiving loans, while the public benefit is far less than claimed.

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