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West Coast Real Estate Update: May 2016 #2

San Francisco Requires Solar Panel Installation on New Buildings - Last month, the City of San Francisco passed an ordinance requiring all new buildings to include solar energy systems. California law currently requires...more

"IRS Guidance Clarifies 'Begun Construction' Standard for Renewable Electricity Production Credit Property"

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has released welcome new guidance with respect to renewable electricity production and energy investment tax credits. A notice issued on May 5, 2016, reflects changes to the production tax...more

West Coast Real Estate Update: April 2016 #1

Residential Communities: Calderon Process for HOAs Likely to Be Extended Again - The California Assembly Committee on Judiciary in early April unanimously passed Assembly Bill (AB) 1963 to extend the pre-litigation...more

New Developments in the Determination of the Texas Franchise Tax Liability

The Texas Franchise Tax is imposed on taxable entities that do business in Texas or that are chartered or organized in the state.  Taxpayers subject to the Texas Franchise Tax may compute their tax liabilities under several...more

Massachusetts State Building Code Update: 9th Edition Now Anticipated to be Issued with Concurrency Period

The following is a January, 2016 updated version of the G&S Advisory originally published in October, 2015 - The Massachusetts State Board of Building Regulations and Standards (the “State Board”) has announced that it...more

Supreme Court of Texas Rules Installation of Faulty Product Not Covered by Standard CGL Policy

In U.S. Metals, Inc. v. Liberty Mutual Group, Inc., No. 14-0753, 2015 Tex. LEXIS 1081 (Tex. Dec. 4, 2015) the Supreme Court of Texas ruled that installation of a faulty component does not cause physical injury to the...more

Massachusetts State Building Code Update: 9th Edition Anticipated to be Issued without Concurrency Period

The Massachusetts State Board of Building Regulations and Standards (the “State Board”) has announced that it expects to issue the 9th Edition of the Massachusetts State Building Code in the first half of 2016, which will...more

Construction and Engineering Toolkit: Insuring Existing Buildings in Which and Next to Which Construction Work is to Take Place

This construction guide covers: -JCT contracts in real estate development -Minimum energy standards for letting buildings -Construction work adjacent to existing structures -Insuring the existing...more

Energy Newsletter - August 2015

Falling Oil Prices Are Not the Only Deterrent to Investment in Mexico's Oil Fields - On July 15, Mexico auctioned 14 shallow-water exploration blocks. The auction marked the first time in nearly eight decades that...more

N.C. Court of Appeals Denies Bid to Return Water/Sewer "Impact Fees"

Impact fees are defined, generally, as a charge on new development to pay for the construction or expansion of off-site capital improvements that are necessitated by and/or benefit the new development. Impact fees have been...more

Green Certification: obtaining green certification for existing buildings in VA

On June 19, 2014, the U.S. Energy Information Administration released its preliminary results for the 2012 Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey (CBECS). According to the CBECS, the United States currently has 87...more

Energy Efficient Buildings: It’s the Law (and a Good Idea Too)

Energy efficiency and sustainable building development and management are no longer viewed as a novel but impractical concept, or something only environmentalists long for. Improving existing buildings and constructing new...more

If You Can’t Stand the Heat…

Are you a developer or landlord of commercial or residential multi-let premises? Are those premises supplied with heat by either a communal heating system or a district heating system?...more

Federal offshore wind auction held for sites off Massachusetts

Federal ocean energy managers have concluded an auction to lease over 350,000 acres off the Massachusetts coast to prepare for offshore wind development. Of the four parcels up for bid in today's auction, one was...more

House Approves Energy Tax Extenders

Last week, the U.S. House of Representatives (House) overwhelming approved a $42 billion tax extenders bill. The bill, H.R. 5771, includes extensions of nearly $10 billion in energy tax incentives through the end of 2014. ...more

DOE Issues Final Rule on Federal Green Building Standards

The Federal government has long been a leader in constructing green buildings, and LEED has been the Federal standard of choice. The Department of Energy issued a final rule updating its recommended certification standards...more

Property Owners' Alert: Newly Effective Statutory Requirements for Installation of Water-Conserving Plumbing Fixtures

The real estate industry and the media recently have been focused on the updates to the Title 24 energy regulations (24 California Code of Regulations, Part 5) that became effective on July 1, 2014, and the increased costs in...more

Four bills broaden the appeal of IFDs as a funding mechanism for local infrastructure, environmental mitigation, private...

Four bills affecting infrastructure financing districts, a funding mechanism for infrastructure and development projects that benefit the broader community, were recently signed by Gov. Jerry Brown. IFDs, created in 1990,...more

Does The EPA Have A Thing Against Building Energy Codes?

What if there was a technology that had a 20 year track record of saving 4.8 quads of energy and 41 million tons of carbon, while saving consumers more than $44 billion over the past 20 years, and was anticipated to save...more

2014 Legislative Update: Environment, Growth Management and Water

CS/CS/CS/HB 325 amends statutory provisions relating to the brownfield program and modifies the procedures for establishing a brownfield area. The bill also authorizes the local government designating a brownfield area to use...more

You Decide: Green Globes v. LEED

The U.S. General Services Administration recently added Green Globes as an additional third-party green building certification system for federal government construction projects. With this addition, many are now asking about...more

2014 Maryland General Assembly Passes Bills Affecting Construction Industry

A number of bills were passed during the Maryland General Assembly’s 2014 legislative session that will impact certain sectors of the construction industry. Ober|Kaler has put together brief summaries of certain key...more

California Encourages Building Efficiency by Implementing Energy Benchmarking Legislation

After a series of delays, California has implemented new energy disclosure legislation requiring nonresidential building owners to disclose energy information to parties to transactions as well as to the California Energy...more

City Fails to Adequately Mitigate "Urban Decay" and Energy Impacts of Big Box Retail Project

In the latest decision addressing challenges to "big box" projects under the California Environmental Quality Act ("CEQA"), on February 28, 2014, the California Court of Appeal invalidated the approval of a retail project in...more

California’s New Building Energy Efficiency Standards to Go Into Effect July 1, 2014

California builders should be aware of a new set of energy efficiency standards set to go into effect on July 1, 2014. The California Energy Commission’s Energy Efficiency Standards (Standards) were promulgated in 1977 to...more

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