FREE Sign upLogin
Scott: Feds closing state’s EB-5 regional center

Scott: Feds closing state’s EB-5 regional center

EB-5 Visa, EB5 Visa, EB-5 Investment

The federal government is shutting down the state’s EB-5 regional center, which is under the cloud of the largest investor fraud case in the history of the EB-5 visa program.

Gov. Phil Scott issued a statement Monday saying the state received notice Friday that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the federal administrator of the EB-5 program, intended to “terminate” the center.

The action is a result of concerns raised by alleged fraud involving hundreds of millions of dollars by two Vermont developers over an eight-year span, according to the notice sent to the state. Jay Peak owner Ariel Quiros and Bill Stenger, the resort’s former president, are accused of misusing money that foreigners invested in several projects through the EB-5 program.

The 27-page notice contains some stinging criticism of past operations of the regional center, including a lack of action and oversight as those developers raised money from immigrant investors. The EB-5 program offers foreigners permanent residency in exchange for investments in qualifying projects.

“It appears that for years (the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development Regional Center) relied excessively — if not primarily — on third party project managers to perform oversight functions rather than taking on those responsibilities itself,” the notice reads.

“Even where a regional center has an outside party providing management services — as occurred here — the ultimate responsibility for compliance with the relevant statutes and regulations, remain with the regional center itself.”

The notice also says the regional center “failed to properly engage in management, monitoring and oversight of the program for many years, as required by the program.”

The notice adds, “USCIS has determined, by a preponderance of the evidence that the Regional Center no longer serves the purpose of promoting economic growth.”

Quiros and Stenger are accused in lawsuits by federal and state regulators of misusing $200 million of $350 million raised from immigrant investors through the EB-5 program.

The money was meant to fund massive upgrades at Jay Peak, a hotel and conference center at Burke Mountain, and two other projects that never got off the ground in Newport, including a $110 million biomedical research center.

The notice of termination by USCIS follows action in July 2016 when the federal agency asked the state to submit an interim application for renewal of the Vermont EB-5 Regional Center designation in light of the fraud allegations against the developers.

The news of the termination came in the same release announcing the results of a review the Scott administration began in July of the EB-5 program and future of the regional center.

That report recommends “winding” down the regional center, the governor’s release stated.

“As our report details, the Scott administration agrees that the center should ultimately be closed. It is clear from our review that state government was not, and is not, the best-suited entity for managing the EB-5 program,” Commerce and Community Development Secretary Michael Schirling said in the statement from the governor’s office.

“It is our hope that USCIS will agree with our approach for a staggered closure to minimize any adverse economic impact and ensure investors in existing, viable projects are protected.”


Source: https://vtdigger.org/2017/08/21/scott-feds-closing-states-eb-5-regional-center/

Mentions

Litigation Cases

States

  • Vermont


Subscribe for News

Site Digest

Videos

Tap42
113March 02, 2017
Project Introduction
113March 02, 2017
by Chloe
104January 24, 2017

Categories

Free eb5 consultation

Securities Disclaimer

This website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute an offer or solicitation to sell shares or securities. Any such offer or solicitation will be made only by means of an investment's confidential Offering Memorandum and in accordance with the terms of all applicable securities and other laws. This website does not constitute or form part of, and should not be construed as, any offer for sale or subscription of, or any invitation to offer to buy or subscribe for, any securities, nor should it or any part of it form the basis of, or be relied on in any connection with, any contract or commitment whatsoever. EB5Projects.com LLC and its affiliates expressly disclaim any and all responsibility for any direct or consequential loss or damage of any kind whatsoever arising directly or indirectly from: (i) reliance on any information contained in the website, (ii) any error, omission or inaccuracy in any such information or (iii) any action resulting therefrom.