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.
Blog
Real Estate Adapts to the New COVID Normal
Blog
Three Overlooked Ways to Reduce Development Costs
SIGNUP RSSReset

Oregon Clarifies State Jurisdiction Over Solar Energy Projects

On June 30, 2020, the Oregon Energy Facility Siting Council (EFSC) issued a permanent administrative order adopting rule changes to hopefully clarify when new solar energy projects in the state must get a land use permit from EFSC.
Read More

Oregon Adopts Temporary E-Notarization Law

In a prior blog post , we identified the recent trend to adoption of e-notarization in several states in response to the COVID crisis. As of that time, Oregon had not authorized e-notarization on either a permanent or temporary basis.
Read More

Oregon Legislature Extends Eviction Moratorium to September 30

On June 26, state lawmakers approved House Bill 4213 extending Governor Brown’s executive order temporarily prohibiting evictions of both residential and commercial tenants for non-payment of rent or other charges under a lease. Under the Governor’s…
Read More

COVID-19 Crisis Renews Interest in e-Notarization

Remote online notarization of documents, often called e-notarization, permits the execution of notarized documents via an audio-visual link between the signer and the notary. This eliminates the need for the signer and notary to be physically present…
Read More

The Lowdown on Commercial Leases in Oregon

A new infographic released by Cushman & Wakefield looks at the past 10 years of commercial real estate growth in Portland. With so much demand for office space from the multiple industries fueling our region's growth, I’m not surprised to see that 85…
Read More

Is Portland Really Requiring Private Developers to Provide Campsites for the Homeless?

The Portland Planning and Sustainability Commission proposed edits to the City’s Design Guidelines to require that the street frontage of some new commercial developments be designed with spaces for people to “rest,” which some interpreted as spaces…
Read More

Things to Think About for Commercial Cannabis Leases in Oregon

Commercial property owners and tenants often ask their lawyers for a "form lease." But no form will fit every situation, and this is particularly true when the tenant is a cannabis business. Because cannabis remains illegal under federal law…
Read More

The Building Blocks of Real Estate Development – Planning and Zoning

Our Real Estate Review miniseries continues with a look at the challenges developers often encounter due to local zoning and other land use regulations. In Oregon, zoning and permitting regulations are mostly set by local city or county governments…
Read More

There Really Is Enough Sunshine to Go Around, People

Crops need sun. Solar panels need sun. One would think there is enough sunshine, even in rainy Oregon, for everyone. But at the urging of some strict farmland preservationists, the Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission recently adopted…
Read More

Federal Tax Law Drafting Error Punishes Commercial Developers

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, signed into law in December 2017, promised radical changes to the federal tax code. Many of its goodies were aimed and the real estate industry, but because of a critical drafting error, many commercial landlords and…
Read More

New Life for an Old Courthouse

Local real estate investment firm NBP Capital acquired the downtown Multnomah County courthouse for $28 million this past November. The current structure was completed in 1914, although the site has been the home of the County courthouse since the…
Read More

Despite Rumors that it often Rains, Oregon Really Is a Solar Paradise

The Oregon Department of Energy has created a web tool showing the phenomenal growth of solar energy in Oregon in the last 20 years. In 1999, 15 tiny solar facilities were all that existed in the state. By 2018 the state appears to be carpeted in a…
Read More

Oregon Adopts First in the Nation Rent Control Law

With the Governor's signature on Senate Bill 608 on February 28, Oregon became the first state with a statewide rent control law. The new law took effect March 1 and is applicable only to residential tenancies.
Read More

Nation's Largest Living Building Is Coming to Portland

A team of Portland's heavy hitters has proposed a new five-story structure in Skidmore/Old Town that could be certified as Portland's first living building. The project team for the PAE Living Building include Gerding Edlen, Walsh Construction…
Read More

Daimler Portland Takes Lead in Automated Trucking

Daimler Trucks North America, headquartered in Portland, recently added 200 jobs to its Automated Truck Research and Development Center here in Rip City. Daimler announced the job growth while unveiling its new Freightliner Cascadia automated truck…
Read More

Portland to Significantly Revamp Historic Preservation Code

The City of Portland has about 10,000 buildings, bridges, cemeteries, landscapes, and other resources that have been designated as historic. Of those, about 5,000 are "documented" on the City's Historic Resource Inventory, which was created in 1984…
Read More

More Real Estate Transactions Now Subject to National Security Review

Created in 1988, the federal Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, or CFIUS, reviews acquisitions of US-based assets by foreigners for potential national security implications. Using CFIUS's findings, the President can then block a…
Read More

How Long Can Portland's Red Hot Economy Last?

October, rarely friendly to financial markets, has recently come and gone. But Portland keeps rolling along. In the last 12 months, Portland Metro has added 37,100 new jobs, a growth rate of 3.2%, while unemployment remains at 3.6% which is basically…
Read More

The Skyscrapers of the Future Will Be Made of Wood

On August 8, the Oregon Building Codes Division approved a new state building code called a Statewide Alternate Method. The new code authorizes the construction of wood buildings taller than six stories, which was the previous limit. Taller wood…
Read More

Do Uber and Lyft Make Traffic Worse?

One of the express promises of ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft was that they would reduce traffic congestion by reducing vehicle ownership. City dwellers would opt not to own their own cars but instead rely on someone else's car to get…
Read More

{{title}}

{{summary}}
Read More