Ear to the Ground
Ear to the Ground
Our attorney contributors share relevant and timely insight into real estate, energy law, water law, and environmental issues.
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HB 2009 Extends the Residential Foreclosure Moratorium, but Title Companies Are Concerned
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Basics of Commercial Real Estate Due Diligence
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How the COVID-19 Pandemic Has Altered Commercial Leasing Forever

Lately, each day has brought more signs that pandemic restrictions are being loosened and the opportunity for a “return to normal” is growing.
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Residential Eviction Moratorium Update

As the COVID-19 vaccine roll-out continues and summer approaches, there is optimism that life may slowly be returning to normal—or at least a new type of normal.
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Wave Energy Could Be Close By

If you've enjoyed an ocean fishing trip or whale watching tour off the Oregon coast, you know that the wave action is relentless. It makes some people turn green just thinking about that bouncy feeling. Well, those constantly rocking waves may yield…
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Rent Assistance Lottery for Oregon Commercial Tenants Opens March 8

Starting March 8, small business owners in Oregon with 100 or fewer employees and who are behind on their rent can apply for a grant from Business Oregon, the state’s economic development agency. Grants are available for up to $100,000 per tenant…
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Update on Portland’s Housing Market – Condominiums and Single-Family Homes

According to recently released market trend reports, the number of condominiums listed for sale in Northeast and Southeast Portland dropped by 20% from September 2020 to December 2020 and the number of units sold increased from 52 in September 2020…
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2021 Oregon Legislative Forecast Is Hazy with a High Chance of Storms

The 2021 legislative session is underway, and it’s already shaping up to be one of the most dynamic in a string of dynamic sessions. Before I give you a rundown of the key bills I’m watching for the commercial real estate industry,
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Corporate Transparency Act’s Efforts to Combat Crime May Impact Small Businesses

The National Defense Authorization Act, passed by the U.S. House and Senate at the end of 2020, contained a piece of legislation intended to increase transparency into shell companies to combat money laundering and criminal behavior: the Corporate…
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Don't Get in a Pickle – Food and Beverage Companies Need to Stay Mindful of Environmental Regulation

They may not realize it, but the manufacturers of many of America's favorite foods (beer, bread, coffee, jerky, salsa, salad dressing, etc.) are subject to a multitude of environmental regulations for food and beverage companies.
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Section 1031: What is Real Property? Four Things You Should Know From the New Final Regulations

Effective December 2, 2020, the IRS issued its Final Regulations (the “Final Regs”) clarifying what is real property under Section 1031 of the Internal Revenue Code.
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Property Owners, Don’t Get Stuck Double-Paying for Janitorial Services

Imagine you are a property owner or manager over any number of properties. You hire various service providers to perform services such as landscaping, security, cleaning, etc.
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Oregon Legislature Extends Residential Eviction Moratorium, Creates Landlord Compensation Fund

On December 21, 2020, the Oregon Legislature passed HB 4401, further extending the moratorium on residential evictions without cause and for nonpayment of rent from December 31, 2020 to June 30, 2021. The law also extends the deadline for repayment…
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Multnomah County “Freezes” Eviction Proceedings Through 2020

Multnomah County may be exiting Governor Kate Brown’s COVID-19 “freeze,” but eviction proceedings in Oregon’s largest county remain largely on hold until after the New Year.
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Oregon Establishes Fund to Help Homeowners Pay Their Mortgages

On November 19, 2020, the Oregon Housing and Community Services Department (OHCS) announced a $20 million fund called the Oregon Homeowner Stabilization Initiative (OHSI) to help homeowners who are behind on their mortgage payments.
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Residential Eviction Extension Proposal Includes Landlord Relief

Oregon House Bill 4213, as extended by Governor Kate Brown’s Executive Order 20-56, currently prohibits eviction of residential tenants for non-payment of rent through December 31, 2020, as previously discussed. However, with COVID-19 raging on and…
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Oregon Rethinks the Future of Recycling

Even though Oregon is considered the third greenest state in the United States, and a national leader when it comes to recycling, Oregon’s waste-management programs are not actually recovering all of the state’s recyclable wastes. The cause of this…
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Cranes and Cows

Usually when you think of cranes on urban land, you picture yellow tower cranes signaling the newest high rise on the horizon. A few years ago, I had the pleasure of representing Columbia Land Trust (CLT) when it acquired about 500 acres of bottom…
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Last Coal-Fired Power Plant in Oregon Shuts Its Doors Forever

On October 15, 2020 at 11:56 a.m., Portland General Electric Company shut down the coal-fired Boardman electricity generating station for the last time. Boise-based Idaho Power, which serves customers in eastern Oregon, is a minority owner in the…
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Banks Sue Over Oregon’s Foreclosure Moratorium

Two recent lawsuits filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Oregon illustrate that Oregon banks are none too pleased about HB 4204. This legislation, passed by the Oregon legislature in June 2020, prohibits residential and commercial…
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The Future(s) of Water

How much will water be worth in the future? We may soon find out. For years, investors have traded “futures” contracts in corn, soybeans, crude oil, silver, and gold. A futures contract is simply an enforceable agreement to buy (or sell) a certain…
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Oregon Eviction Ban Extended for Residential But Not Commercial Tenants

On September 28, Governor Kate Brown issued Executive Order 20-56. Citing the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the recent state wildfires, the Order extends the existing ban on eviction of residential tenants for non-payment of rent until December 31…
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