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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

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  1. EB-5 Reform Legislation Introduced in House

    by , 03-07-2014 at 02:47 PM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
    Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO) introduced EB-5 reform legislation this week called the American Entrepreneurship and Investment Act of 2014 which reforms the EB-5 program. Here are the highlights:


    Here are a few highlights -


    1. Permanent re-authorization of the EB-5 program (it expires in September 2015).


    2. Adds closed military bases to Targeted Employment Areas.


    3. Minimum investments will change based on inflation.


    4. Full-time jobs would include part time workers working at least 35 hours per week.


    5. Would establish pre-approval process for specific projects.


    6. USCIS would need to give deference to prior findings.


    7. Mandates USCIS establish a premium processing program for EB-5s.


    8. USCIS must give deference to prior decisions.


    9. Provides age-out protections for children of EB-5 investors.


    10. Allows for concurrent filing of I-526s and adjustment applications.


    11. Creates a new national interest waiver green card category for entrepreneurs who have benefited the US economy and created jobs for US workers.


    12. Immediate family members are not subject to the EB-5 category cap.


    13. Eliminates per country quotas (mainly an issue right now for Chinese nationals).


    14. Allows USCIS to consult with the Department of Commerce in approving regional centers.
    Tags: eb-5 Add / Edit Tags
  2. Immigrant of the Day: Barkhad Abdi - Nominee for Academy Award

    by , 03-07-2014 at 01:36 PM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
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    "Look at me. I'm the Captain now" has become a catch phrase and is certainly the most memorable line in the Oscar-nominated Captain Phillips. It was spoken by Barkhad Abdi, a Somali-born actor who portrayed a Somali pirate taking over a US ship. The role was his first. In fact, he was working in his brother's cell phone store in Minneapolis when he got cast and he returned to his work after the film was completed. He smartly has decided now to give this acting thing a go - you know, with an Academy Award nomination and all.
  3. Kerlikowske Appointed CBP Chief

    by , 03-07-2014 at 11:16 AM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
    The Senate confirmed Gil Kerlikowske as head of Customs and Border Protection. Kerlikowske is the former chief of the Seattle Police Department and is the first permanent CBP chief since 2011. He comes to the agency as it has been receiving considerable criticism in the media and from human rights groups for border deaths and abusive treatment of individuals at ports of entry. Having a Senate-confirmed head of the agency will hopefully make it easier for the agency to focus on making needed internal reforms.
  4. Visa Restrictions Slapped on Bad Actors in Ukraine

    by , 03-07-2014 at 11:08 AM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
    The White House issued an executive order this week barring travel to the US of any individuals deemed to have contributed to the undermining of the Democratic process in Ukraine. That's a fairly broad group that could include those who engaged in human rights abuses during the revolt in Ukraine as well as those connected with Russia's invasion of Crimea.
  5. Immigrant of the Day: Lupita Nyong'o - Academy Award Winning Actress

    by , 03-03-2014 at 07:53 PM (Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy)
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    How can you not love Lupita Nyong'o? NBC News declared of her "A Star is Born" after she won an Academy Award last night for her performance as Patsey in Twelve Years a Slave. She delivered a classy and poignant acceptance speech that was as memorable as her award-winning performance. .

    Lupita was born in Mexico to Kenyan parents and she is the first Mexican-born woman as well as the sixth woman of color to win an Academy Award.

    Her father was a visiting professor in Mexico City and Lupita moved back to Kenya as a little girl. When she was 16, she went back to Mexico to study Spanish for a year.

    Lupita began acting in grade school and made her professional acting debut in Nairobi at the age of 14 as Juliet in a production of Romeo and Juliet. She came to the US to attend Hampshire College and then went on to work on production crews for a number of films including The Constant Gardener with Ralph Fiennes who she credits with encouraging her to pursue an acting career. She enrolled in Yale's famous drama school in 2009 and finished last year.

    This was Lupita's first film role since graduating Yale. And it was a stunner. She was nominated 73 different awards for this acting role and won 45 of them.

    It's the rare acceptance speech that draws the kind of emotional response that Lupita's words elicited, particularly since you get just a few seconds to express yourself. The Washington Post provided a transcript this morning:

    Thank you to the Academy for this incredible recognition. It doesnít escape me for one moment that so much joy in my life is thanks to so much pain in someone elseís. And so I want to salute the spirit of Patsey for her guidance. And for Solomon, thank you for telling her story and your own.

    Steve McQueen, you charge everything you fashion with a breath of your own spirit. Thank you so much for putting me in this position, itís been the joy of my life. [Tears, applause.] Iím certain that the dead are standing about you and watching and they are grateful and so am I.

    Chiwetel, thank you for your fearlessness and how deeply you went into Solomon, telling Solomonís story. Michael Fassbender, thank you so much. You were my rock. Alfre and Sarah, it was a thrill to work with you. Joe Walker, the invisible performer in the editing room, thank you. Sean Bobbitt, Kalaadevi, Adruitha, Patty Norris, thank you, thank you, thank you ó I could not be here without your work.

    I want to thank my family, for your training [laughs] and the Yale School of Drama as well, for your training. My friends the Wilsons, this oneís for you. My brother Junior sitting by my side, thank you so much, youíre my best friend and then my other best friend, my chosen family.

    When I look down at this golden statue, may it remind me and every little child that no matter where youíre from, your dreams are valid. Thank you.

    Lupita is already on screen in a new role in the just premiered Non-Stop with Liam Neeson. I'm looking forward to seeing this break-out actress moving on to leading actress roles.
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