Saturday, October 15, 2016

Daley aiming for $15 million green-card bonanza. Senator Leahy: “Only in the world of EB-5 is Beverly Hills considered economically distressed.”

The Chicago Sun-Times reports:
Former Mayor Richard M. Daley and his son are aiming to cash in on a federal program that offers green cards to wealthy foreigners with a deal that could bring their company $15 million, records obtained by the Chicago Sun-Times show.

Tur Partners — which Daley formed with his son Patrick Daley after leaving office — is seeking permission from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to solicit $150 million from foreign investors to help finance construction of a downtown skyscraper through a controversial visa program known as EB-5.

The Daleys hope to land as many as 300 foreign investors, most likely from China, according to the application Patrick Daley submitted to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security on Sept. 22, 2015. Each would put up $500,000 for the skyscraper project and also pay a $50,000 administrative fee that would bring the Daleys’ company $15 million, the application shows.

In return, the foreigners would be eligible to be granted visas allowing them and their immediate families to move to the United States and live here forever.

The Daleys would then lend the money put up by the foreigners to Magellan Development Group, a Chicago company that’s building Vista Tower, which would be the city’s third-tallest skyscraper, on Wacker Drive near Lake Shore Drive. Magellan also has plans for another tower nearby.
There's more on the Chicago Democrat Machine scheme:
Some foreigners have been granted visas “despite security warnings,” Grassley said, raising concerns about the source of the money they used to obtain a visa through one of more than 800 authorized EB-5 “centers” — including Tur Partners.

“It is obvious that foreign corporations and foreign governments are increasingly taking advantage of the . . . program to establish ownership in U.S.-based real estate projects,” Grassley said. “I am concerned that this may allow foreign corporations and foreign governments to profit from marketing U.S. green cards to their citizens.“

The senators said some foreign investors have been defrauded and charged excessive administrative fees and that there is little follow up by the federal government to verify those foreign investments create the promised jobs.

Grassley and Leahy maintain that developers have co-opted the EB-5 program by gerrymandering their project boundaries to include impoverished neighborhoods.

“Affluent areas now dominate the program by exploiting incentives intended for underserved areas, a practice . . . described as gerrymandering,” Leahy said in a speech on the Senate floor last month. “Only in the world of EB-5 is Beverly Hills considered economically distressed.”
You'll want to read the entire article. No word yet from Chicago Machine operative Barack Obama.