Leahy works to make EB-5 program permanent - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Leahy works to make EB-5 program permanent

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WASHINGTON -

Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy is working to make the EB-5 visa program permanent.

The program has helped attract tens of millions of dollars to Vermont development projects, like the big expansion of Jay Peak. It offers foreigners green cards in exchange for investing a half million dollars in job-creating projects in poor and rural areas.

The program has been around since 1993. Leahy wants to make it permanent, and his amendment received bipartisan support in committee.

"We've talked about the investment in America to make the economy stronger. My amendment's going to just that. The EB-5 program has created many good paying jobs for American workers in the state of Vermont," said Leahy, D-Vermont.

"This clearly is a job-creating immigration amendment. It allows persons to come to America, if they're going to invest, and if they're going to create jobs," said Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Alabama.

Leahy's amendment was added to the massive immigration reform bill now under consideration in the Senate Judiciary Committee.

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