The Senate passed a stopgap spending bill, 63-36, to avoid a government shutdown at midnight on Friday, December 9, 2016.  The bill, which will fund the government through April 28 of next year, heads to the president after a group of Senate Democrats dropped their insistence on a longer extension of coal miners' health benefits.

On November 30, 2016, USCIS released a draft EB-5 Policy Manual.  The draft EB-5 Policy Manual is a compendium and restatement of EB-5 law and USCIS EB-5 policy.  USCIS has provided a very short comment period.  Comments are due by December 14, 2016.  We provide a copy of the USCIS email notice below.  I.A. Donoso & Associates will be analyzing and commenting on this draft EB-5 Policy Manual, and will provide further updates as soon as additional information is available.

August 29, 2016

On August 29, 2016, the Investor Program Office of U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (“USCIS”) held national a conference call for the EB-5 immigrant investor visa program.  This conference call was a follow-up to the July 28, 2016, stakeholder conference call during which technical difficulties made telephonic participation impossible. Leading the Investor Program Office were Nicholas Colucci, Chief of the EB-5 Program, and Laurie McKenzie, Division Chief of Policy.

On August 3, 2016, USCIS submitted a new proposed rule on parole for entrepreneurs to the Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) for review.  This rule has been much anticipated as the program was first proposed almost two years ago under President Barack Obama’s immigration executive actions and outlined in a formal memo dated 11/20/2014, from the Department of Homeland Security to USCIS entitled “Policies Supporting U.S. High-Skilled Businesses and Workers.”
The latest Department of State Visa Bulletin for August 2016 shows a new backlog of visas in the EB-1 category for applicants born in Mainland China and India.  The backlog shows that visa petitions filed in January 2010 are being processed for Final Action, with all visa petitions filed later being subject to a wait of approximately 6 years.