Kingdom Con sharp contrast to EB-5 success stories
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News of this month's Kingdom Con has impacted many, from workers and communities to defrauded investors. But many businesses that have successfully used the EB-5 foreign investor program are also in shock, and concerned about the future.
Sugarbush resort has invested millions over the past decade in projects to expand and modernize the ski resort. From guest services to a new base lodge, much of the work was made possible by $20 million in EB-5 foreign investor funds.
"For us, it was a terrific program. In 05/06, when we raised the money, we did not have access to bank financing. Capital was very expensive for us and so EB-5 provided us a lifeline," said Adam Greshin, a state representative from Warren, and one of Sugarbush's owners.
It's because of that positive experience he said the recent EB-5 fraud allegations were so disturbing.
"It was troubling to me because EB-5 as a way for companies to raise money and to further their business is not a bad program, but it relies upon correctly following the rules and businesses doing what they're supposed to be doing with the money they take in," Greshin said.