Model Policies

Pima County's comprehensive, point-based program is voluntary. Home size determines the number of points needed to achieve each level of certification. Plan review and inspection of program elements are fully integrated into the standard permitting and inspection process. The program is designed to coordinate with ENERGY STAR, utility incentive programs, and EPAct Home program. A parallel commercial program is under development.

Focus: Residential
Category: Green Building, Incentive
State: Arizona

Ordinance 04411 adds the Green Building Program to county building regulations. It also establishes program goals, outlines rating requirements, and expedites permit processing for GreenPoint Rated or LEED homes.

Focus: Commercial, Multi-Family, Residential
Category: Green Building, Incentive
State: California

Any building permit or water hook-up shall be issued or granted only if the applicant demonstrates that the water demands created by the use of the structures for which the building permit, water hook-up or development approval is sought will be entirely offset (Ord. No. 2003-36 § 11). In all cases, the amount of water offset by retrofits shall be equal to or greater than the estimated water usage of the proposed building, as determined by the annual water budget procedures.

Focus: Commercial, Multi-Family, Residential
State: New Mexico

Beginning July 1, 2009 all new applications for single-family residential buildings in the city of Santa Fe are subject to the Residential Green Building Code. Home size determines the number of points needed to achieve each level of certification. Plan review and inspection of program elements will be fully integrated into the permitting and inspection process. The program is designed to coordinate with ENERGY STAR, utility incentive programs, and EPAct Home program

Focus: Residential
Category: Green Building
State: New Mexico

The following requirements are effective July 1, 2010: All new or substantially renovated residential structures must comply with the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) New York ENERGY STAR-Labeled Home Program. At a minimum, homes less than 3500 ft2 must attain a Home Energy Rating System (HERS) rating of 84; homes with 3501 to 4500 ft2 must attain a HERS rating of 87; homes with 4501 to 6500 ft2 must attain a HERS rating of 90; and homes over 6500 ft2 must attain a HERS rating of 93. All commercial and municipal buildings, regardless of size, must meet the ""designed to ENERGY STAR"" requirements. Owners of residential homes and commercial buildings that meet LEED requirements are eligible for a refund of 0.25% of the costs of construction

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Green Building, Incentive
State: New York

All new residential homes must meet the minimum requirements for certification as an Earth Advantage home, including an evaluation of energy usage, water usage, and air quality guidelines. Developers may increase the base density of units in residential developments by incorporating energy efficiency, architectural creativity and innovation, and the use of natural features of the landscape

Focus: Residential
Category: Green Building
State: Oregon

In addition to the building codes of the city, the following is required: a minimum Home Energy Rating System (HERS) score of 83; one programmable thermostat on every story; return air paths on rooms must be closed off by a door; all joints in the air distribution system must be sealed with duct mastic; ASHRAE 62.2 must be met in respect to indoor air quality, HVAC system; HVAC plenums must be constructed of sheet metal; air filters must be replaced before occupancy; carpets, cushions, and adhesives must carry the Carpet and Rug Institute's (CRI) green label; vinyl wallpaper is not allowed in portions of the home. In addition to the landscape ordinance, bedding must be mulched using recycled content; and each installed tree must have an irrigation drip bag or zoned bubbler system. In addition to the city's waste and recycling regulations, construction waste, including brick and wood, must be recycled

Focus: Residential
Category: Green Building, Water and Landscaping
State: Texas

Before residential homes may be built, a site plan must be prepared that identifies important features such as native vegetation and nearby water sources including streams and springs. The site plan must also contain a report on how the features of the site may be used to support green building and low impact development. Green certification may be attained by BuiltGreen or LEED.

Focus: Residential
Category: Green Building
State: Washington

The original ordinance was signed in 2000, with additional definitions added in 2006 for clarification. Gilbert's water conservation ordinance addresses irrigation water use in new residential developments and commercial properties. Water-intensive landscaping in common areas of a new single family or multi-family development shall not exceed 10% of the total landscapable area in the new development. If reclaimed water is used on such common areas, the town's reclaimed water incentive rate shall be charged. If only reclaimed water is used on common areas, the amount of water-intensive landscaping may increase to 50% of the total landscapable area. In model homes, the following restrictions apply: (a) The combined water-intensive landscaping and water features of model homes in new single-family developments shall not exceed 20% of the landscapable area; (b) Water-intensive landscaping shall be located only where it is functionally useful, such as in play areas or...

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Water and Landscaping
State: Arizona

The city of Stamford will strive to purchase green alternatives to the top 10 items or services routinely purchased by the city, or which represent a significant cost savings, including cleaners, computers, fleets, office electronics, and paint.

Category: Miscellaneous
State: Connecticut

All landscaping, except native plants, drought-tolerant landscape and that of single family residential homes, must be equipped with irrigation systems that are designed to avoid runoff, low-head drainage, and over spray. Turf areas must utilize low-volume irrigation and be on a separate line from plant irrigation.

Focus: Adoption, Green and Advanced Codes
Category: Water and Landscaping
State: Florida

All irrigation systems must be installed with a rainwater sensor that will override the system to ensure landscapes are not being watered in the rain. Violators will be charged a fine that will increase with each day of offense, up to $400 per day.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Water and Landscaping
State: North Carolina

Directly watering impervious surfaces such as driveways and sidewalks, as well as overwatering to the extent that water cannot be absorbed into the soil, will result in a fine of that will increase with each day of offense, up to $400 per day.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Water and Landscaping
State: North Carolina

Residential and commercial buildings with even numbered addresses are allowed to water Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. Residential and commercial buildings with odd numbered addresses are allowed to water Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. Watering by hand with a can or hose is allowed any day of the week, as long as the hose or can is physically held by a person. Residential fines can be up to $500. Commercial fines can range from $250 to $2,000.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Water and Landscaping
State: North Carolina

Authorizes the collection of precipitation from a roof of a building that is primarily used as a residence and is not connected to a domestic water system if the water collected is used for fire protection, the watering of livestock, irrigation and household purposes. Concerns rainwater harvesting and water efficiency/conservation.

Focus: Residential
Category: Water and Landscaping
State: Colorado

All single- and two-family residences must incorporate environmentally sustainable principles and low maintenance plant species into landscaping. A maximum of 50% of plants (excluding trees) may be nondrought tolerant.

Focus: Residential
Category: Water and Landscaping
State: Florida

Technical assistance and financial incentives must be established to encourage compliance with a variety of established third party programs. Commercial projects receive rebates based on level of LEED certification, while residential projects receive rebates based on the number of units certified. All new municipal buildings over 10,000 ft2 must be LEED Certified

Focus: Adoption, Green and Advanced Codes
Category: Green Building, Incentive
State: California

Incentives are provided to utility customers (residential and commercial) in purchasing renewable energy services. Energy audits are required before funding is given.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Energy Audits, Benchmarking, and Disclosure, Incentive
State: Delaware

Any county, city, or town in Montana that has enacted an energy efficiency program may include voluntary standards for new commercial construction that promote energy conservation and provide incentives for following the standards. Incentives can be greater than those offered by the state building code.

Focus: Commercial
Category: Incentive
State: Montana

All applicants with buildings or renovations/additions seeking LEED certification in Ashland will receive priority plan checks.

Focus: Adoption
Category: Incentive
State: Oregon

The Arlington County Green Building Density Incentive Policy applies to special exception site plan requests for bonus density and/or height. The program uses the LEED rating system as a standard for measuring each project. The floor area ratio (FAR) bonus depends on the level of LEED Certification and building type (commercial, high-rise residential). The County established a Green Building Fund; builders that do not commit to a LEED rating contribute to the Fund. The contribution is calculated at a rate of $0.045 per square foot. (This calculation is based on the fees assessed by the U.S. Green Building Council for registration and evaluation of a formal LEED application.) The Green Building Fund is used to provide education and outreach to developers and the community on green building issues. Developers must post a bond or letter of credit before a certificate of occupancy is issued. If a project receives LEED certification from the USGBC, the Fund contribution is...

Focus: Adoption, Green and Advanced Codes
Category: Incentive
State: Virginia

Chicago has several green roof incentive programs, including the Green Roof Improvement Fund, a 50% grant match for the cost of placing a green roof on an existing building located in the Central Loop TIF District up to a maximum grant amount of $100,000 per project, and the Green Roof Grant Program, which awards $5,000 grants for green roof projects on residential and small commercial projects. In addition, the city of Chicago currently requires all new, near-flat roofs meet the U.S. EPA ENERGY STAR cool roof standards as part of the Chicago Energy Conservation Code. A cool roof uses special materials to reflect the sun's heat instead of warming the building below. The city's Cool Roofs Grant Program provides up to $6,000 each to help residents and small business owners install roofs that meet or exceed the cool roof standards.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Incentive
State: Illinois

This law provides model policy ordinances for construction and demolition (C&D) construction, green building, etc.

Focus: Commercial
Category: Green Building, Miscellaneous
State: California

Public Resources Code Section 25402.1(h)2 and Section 10-106 of the Building Energy Efficiency Standards establish a process which allows local adoption of energy standards that are more energy efficient than the statewide Standards. This process allows local governments to adopt and enforce energy standards before the statewide Standards effective date, require additional energy conservation measures, and/or set stricter energy budgets. Local governments are required to apply to the Energy Commission for approval, documenting the supporting analysis for how the local government has determined that their proposed Standards will save more energy than the current statewide Standards and the basis of the local government's determination that the local standards are cost-effective. Once the Energy Commission staff has verified that the local standards will require buildings to use no more energy than the current statewide Standards and that the documentation requirements...

Focus: Adoption
Category: Energy Audits, Benchmarking, and Disclosure, Exceeding the Code, Green Building, Incentive, Lighting Upgrades, Miscellaneous, Netmetering and Submetering Policies, Retro-commissioning, Water and Landscaping
State: California

This template offers ideas, provisions, and definitions a local government may chose to include when developing a green building ordinance. This document also includes ordinances and resolutions already passed by Florida jurisdictions.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Green Building
State: Florida

Index of Green Building Provisions in Florida Municipal Codes, 2009

Focus: Adoption, Green and Advanced Codes
Category: Energy Audits, Benchmarking, and Disclosure, Exceeding the Code, Green Building, Incentive, Netmetering and Submetering Policies, Retro-commissioning, Water and Landscaping
State: Florida

This document provides a sample ordinance, including a blank template.

Focus: Residential
Category: Code Adoption and Compliance
State: Oregon

The purpose of this document is to compile and summarize city and county ordinances that provide incentives or regulations to promote sustainable development. City or county officials can use this document to aid in drafting sustainable development policies for their local area. The goal of this booklet is to increase knowledge and awareness of current policies and ordinances created around the theme of sustainable development and conservation.

Focus: Adoption
Category: Code Adoption and Compliance, Green Building, Incentive
State: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Texas, Virginia, Washington

Arkansas HB 1624 promotes economic development and exempts fuel and energy used or consumed in manufacturing from the state sales tax.

Category: Miscellaneous
State: Arkansas

Arizona HB 2336 authorizes the governing body of a city or town to designate renewable energy incentive districts to encourage the construction and operation of renewable energy equipment in the district. It also provides for expedited zoning procedures, abatement of zoning fees, expedited processing of permits, and abatement or waivers of development standards and requires a public hearing.

Category: Miscellaneous
State: Arizona

This legislation permits solid waste management facilities to collect and convert methane gas from landfills to electricity or other alternative sources of energy.

Category: Miscellaneous
State: Arkansas

Colorado SB 51 amends the State Clean Energy Finance Program Act to include credit unions among the lenders that may make loans under the program. It also includes renewable energy developers and installers of solar panels and other renewable energy generation equipment among the contractors that may be certified under the program. Finally, it authorizes the Governor's Energy Office, as administrator of the program, to develop and license the use of a "Clean and Green" Colorado.

Category: Miscellaneous
State: Colorado

Colorado SB 78 requires the state historical society and the cities that distribute grant monies from the state historical fund to adopt standards for the distribution of the monies that allow the use of energy-efficient materials and technologies, as long as their use does not affect the historic appearance of a historic property.

Category: Miscellaneous
State: Colorado

Initiative 202 authorizes the city council to levy and collect a Climate Action Plan Tax from residential, commercial, and industrial power consumers for the purpose of funding a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Miscellaneous
State: Colorado

Resolution-38-06 increases the urban forest canopy to 50% of the city's land area by 2036, purchases 20% of the city's total energy needs from renewable resources by 2020, and requires the city of Annapolis to purchase only ENERGY STAR equipment and appliances.

Category: Water and Landscaping
State: Maryland

In addition to requirements for increased energy performance, indoor air quality and homeowner education, the residential green building ordinance specifies the need for waste reduction and recycling. The waste reduction goal is to divert a minimum of 50% (by weight) from the landfill site.

Focus: Residential
Category: Green Building
State: Maryland

The Federal government will reduce the amount of energy consumed by 30% by the end of FY15.

Focus: Regulatory
State: National

In an effort to lead by example, the Federal Government must increase energy efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, conserve water, reduce waste and pollution, practice green procurement, and construct high performance buildings. Detailed efforts on achieving the goals to lead by example are outlined in this ordinance.

Focus: Regulatory
Category: Green Building, Miscellaneous, Water and Landscaping
State: National

In addition to green building requirements for all new city construction to attain a LEED certification, Derry also requires the purchase of hybrid vehicles and alternative fuel for the town fleet.

Category: Green Building, Miscellaneous, Non-building
State: New Hampshire

Resolution No. 07-09 requires a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2% annually from 2007, until 80% of baseline (FY 2001-02) is reached.

Category: Miscellaneous
State: North Carolina

SBC-11 involves education and training requirements for building inspectors and code officials.

Focus: Adoption
Category: Miscellaneous
State: Rhode Island

This communication pertains to log home testing. The log home industry will not support any new code changes because many of the standards are too restrictive. The council has agreed to use REScheck, however.

Focus: Residential
Category: Code Adoption and Compliance, Miscellaneous
State: Virginia

All city departments will incorporate green and environmentally preferred purchasing practices into the current program. All departments are responsible for purchasing ENERGY STAR or similarly energy-efficient appliances, using and encouraging contractors to use recycled materials, purchasing Persistent Bioaccumulative Toxic (PBT) free products when available and using alternative fuels and hybrid vehicles when possible.

Category: Miscellaneous
State: Washington

August 28, 2009, Governor Pat Quinn signed the Energy Efficient Building Act into law. The Act established a statewide residential energy code (for the first time), which requires that newly constructed residential buildings meet the minimum standards set forth in the most recent version of the International Energy Conservation Code (2009 IECC). The Illinois Capital Development Board (CDB) must now review and adopt the code through an administrative proceeding. The Illinois Capital Development Board adopts each new version of the IECC within 9 months of its publication, with an effective date 3 months afterwards. Administrative rules for the law are developed by CDB and approved by the General Assembly's Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR). Illinois has adopted the last three published versions of ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1. The state is now on track to adopt both residential and commercial consistently. Illinois adopted the 2009 IECC/ASHRAE 90.1-2007 on...

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Code Adoption and Compliance
State: Illinois

The Iowa Building Code Commission has the authority to adopt and amend the building codes. The state energy code is reviewed on a 3-year code cycle corresponding to publication of the IECC. Iowa has consistently adopted the IECC published version the past three code cycles. Iowa adopted the 2009 IECC on January 1, 2010.

Focus: Adoption
Category: Code Adoption and Compliance
State: Iowa

The Idaho Building Code Board has authority to adopt and amend building codes pursuant to I.C. Section 39-4109. Updated codes are adopted every 3 years by the Idaho Legislature as they are revised by the International Code Council. Idaho has consistently adopted the IECC published versions the past four code cycles. Idaho adopted the 2009 IECC on January 1, 2011.

Focus: Adoption
Category: Code Adoption and Compliance
State: Idaho

The Oregon Building Codes Division has the authority to approve and adopt codes and proposed code amendments. The state building code is derived from the most appropriate version of base model codes, which are adopted approximately every 3 years from the last Oregon specialty code effective date. Oregon adopted the OR Residential Specialty Code (ORSC) effective July 1, 2011 and the OR Energy Efficiency Specialty Code (OEESC) for commercial buildings effective July 1, 2010. Oregon has also adopted a commercial reach code, which became effective July 1, 2011. This is a voluntary code based on the International Green Construction Code. Oregon is one of the few states that now has a reach code based on the baseline code, which has exceeded the IECC version for the last two code cycles.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Code Adoption and Compliance
State: Oregon

The Virginia Board of Housing and Community Development (a Governor-appointed board) has authority to adopt changes to the Uniform Statewide Building Code (USBC). The adoption process for modifications may take up to 12 months. Virginia is on a 3-year review cycle concurrent with the publications of new editions of the model codes. Virginia has consistently adopted the IECC published versions the past four code cycles. Virginia adopted the 2009 IECC, effective March 1, 2011, with a 1-year phase-in period during which builders and designers can still use the current USBC version.

Focus: Commercial, Residential
Category: Code Adoption and Compliance
State: Virginia

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