House Holds Hearing on Immigrant Investor Program and Job Creation
On September 14, 2011, the House of Representatives’ Subcommittee on Immigration Policy and Enforcement held a hearing on the EB-5 investor visa program. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Tex.) opened the hearing by declaring that the “number one job of Congress is to create jobs.” He said the investor visa program plays a part in achieving that goal. “The regional center pilot project, which is almost two decades old, has become the most used part of the investor visa program,” Rep. Smith noted. “Investment through a regional center is attractive to potential investors because they are relieved of the responsibility of running a new business and they can count indirect job creation towards the job creation requirement.” He said that the Association to Invest in the USA “has estimated that the regional center program has created or saved over 65,000 jobs in the U.S. and has led to the investment of over $3 billion in the U.S. economy,” and noted that the program is set to expire on September 30, 2012. Rep. Smith said the hearing would focus on how to continue bringing entrepreneurs to the U.S. while rooting out fraud and abuse.
Witnesses included William Stenger, President and Chief Executive Officer, Jay Peak Resort, Vermont; Daniel Healy, Chief Executive Officer, Civitas Capital Group, Texas; Jason Mendelson, Managing Director, Foundry Group, Colorado; and Shervin Pishevar, Managing Director, Menlo Ventures, California.
Rep. Smith’s statement and the statements of the witnesses are available at http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/hear_09142011.html.