- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 9, 2016

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - South Dakota is arguing to a federal immigration agency that the state can effectively manage its troubled program that recruits wealthy foreign investors for projects in exchange for green cards.

An attorney retained by the state argued in a Monday letter that the South Dakota Regional Center’s participation in the federal EB-5 investment-for-visa program should not be terminated.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services said in a July notice that participation should be terminated for reasons including the diversion of millions of investor dollars away from intended purposes.

The agency sent its decision to its own Administrative Appeals Office for review.

The attorney for the state says in the letter that past problems don’t mean the Regional Center can’t appropriately operate to encourage economic growth in the future. The state says termination would have a “horrific impact” on innocent investors.

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