China Hub Debate Takes on New Issue

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JEFFERSON CITY- Missouri lawmakers are back at the Capitol this week trying to hash out a major jobs bill that includes tax incentives for a China cargo hub at Lambert International Airport in St. Louis.  Now, this controversial issue has gotten even more complicated.

A program designed to exchange foreign investments for visas into the U.S. is being intended to partially fund the China hub.  The visa program gives foreign investors entry into the U.S. for a six or seven figure backing of the China hub - the same visa program used by failed U.S.-China business venture Mamtek.

The EB 5 visa program is a fast track to U.S. residency for foreign investors and their immediate family up to three generations if they invest $500,000 or $1 million in new businesses and create ten jobs.

The Missouri House Economic Development Committee is set to take up the bill Wednesday and at least five of the 27 members say they haven't even heard of the EB 5 visa program.  On Thursday, Columbia Senator Kurt Schaefer said news that EB 5 visas would be a part of China hub is a reason to slow down the bill, but Monday House Economic Development Committee Member Jamilah Nasheed said it wasn't news.

Representatives say they hope to have a bill pushed through to the senate by Friday.

For more informationon the EB 5 visa program click here.