On Apr 10 2014 by H. Ronald Klasko
Reflecting on the Past Year
Sometimes you have to step back. I usually publish blogs with my interpretations of EB-5 legal issues, critiques of EB-5 policies and my perspectives on EB-5 practice. I don’t publish blogs on what our EB-5 Team does day in and day out. Today is an exception. Our EB-5 Team at the Klasko firm deserves some credit in print.
I just returned from an EB-5 summit in Shanghai where I was asked to deliver opening remarks providing my perspectives on the past year. Although I rarely have time to think about it, when I had to put together the remarks, I realized that it has truly been an extraordinary year for our EB 5 practice.
I started my remarks stating that I love what I do. I love it because I believe we are making a difference, and helping to achieve the purposes of the EB-5 program, which was intended to promote job creation and an improved economy in the U.S. Within the past year, our firm’s Investor Team filed almost 400 EB-5 petitions for investors and helped hundreds of investors and their families successfully complete their immigration to the U.S. Our EB-5 Project Team performed the EB-5 immigration legal services for our developer clients for projects that resulted in the infusion of almost $1 billion of EB-5 capital into the U.S. economy. These projects include, among other things, hotels, casinos, condominiums, entertainment complexes, office buildings, retail projects, residential projects, and even the development of an entire neighborhood. The projects that our EB-5 Team have been involved in over the past year have added tens of thousands of jobs to the U.S. economy, and resulted in more than 500 approved I-526 petitions.
In addition, we have obtained regional center approvals for over 20 new regional centers within the past year. These regional centers encompass territories covering more than fifteen states, and will be a source of new jobs, new capital infusion and new investor immigrants in the coming years. The regional centers include a public-private partnership, a regional center approved based on a tenant occupancy model and a regional center encompassing two entire states. The projects on which the regional center approvals were based included a raceway, a cargo container transport terminal, check cashing stores, education and child care facilities, as well as the more traditional hotels, restaurants, shopping malls, charter schools, condominiums, office buildings, mixed-use facilities and residential projects.
So while future blogs will again return to discussions of cutting-edge legal issues and new developments in EB-5 law and policy, I wanted to devote one blog to stepping back and reflecting on our day-to-day accomplishments for clients and the impact that they have had on so many development projects, on the U.S. economy and on investors and their families. There is a reason that I, and our firm’s EB-5 Team, love what we do.