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Portland May Tax ‘Non-Green’ Building Projects

portland1In Portland, new buildings that are not LEED Silver-certified or better may face a punitive tax, if a recent proposal goes through.

New commercial buildings 20,000 square feet or larger would fall under a so-called “feebate” program, in which developers that merely comply with Oregon’s state building code would be charged as much as $3.46 a square foot. For buildings that achieve LEED Silver certification or better, the fee would be waived, and some developments would even qualify for a rebate of $1.73-17.30 per square foot depending on the certification level.

Portland’s Bureau of Planning and Sustainability also may require buildings to achieve specific LEED credits, such as for energy efficiency and reducing water use.

The proposal has been met with some criticism, but it has earned the backing of the Portland Oregonian newspaper’s editorial board.

Portland has landed atop a list of America’s greenest cities.

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