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Montgomery County - High Performance Building Property Tax Credit

Eligibility 
Commercial
Industrial
Multi-Family Residential
Savings Category 
Photovoltaics
Solar Water Heat
Maximum Rebate 

Total: $5 million per fiscal year limit for all buildings
Silver rating: $1.5 million per fiscal year
Gold rating: $2.5 million per fiscal year

Program Info
Start Date 

03/17/2008

State 
Maryland
Program Type 
Property Tax Incentive
Rebate Amount 

10% to 75% credit from property taxes owed on building for 3-5 years; varies by building type and building rating

Provider 
Department of Finance

The state of Maryland permits local governments (Md Code: Property Tax § 9-242) to offer property tax credits for high performance buildings if they choose to do so. Montgomery County has exercised this option by offering property tax credits on new or extensively modified multi-family residential and commercial buildings that meet certain high performance building standards. An "extensive modification" is defined as a structural modification that alters 50% or more of the building's square footage.

The tax credit generally uses the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED rating system as a metric for determining how "green"' a building is, although buildings that achieve comparable ratings under other green building standards are also eligible for the tax credit. Tax credits are available for buildings that achieve minimum ratings under the LEED New Construction (NC); Core and Shell (CS); and Existing Building (EB).

The amount (10-75%) and term (3-5 years) of the tax credit varies based on the type project and the rating it achieves. See the table below for details. The term "covered" refers to new or substantially reconstructed non-residential and multi-family residential buildings over 10,000 square feet, which are already required by county law to meet the basic LEED certification standard or its equivalent. Thus the minimum standard for property tax credits on buildings of this type is correspondingly higher.

Building Type Certification Type Exemption Amount Term
Covered LEED-NC or LEED-CS Platinum 75% 5 years
Covered LEED-NC or LEED-CS Gold 25% 5 years
Covered LEED-EB Platinum 50% 3 years
Covered LEED-EB Gold 10% 3 years
Not Covered LEED-NC or LEED-CS Platinum 75% 5 years
Not Covered LEED-NC or LEED-CS Gold 50% 5 years
Not Covered LEED-NC or LEED-CS Silver 25% 5 years
Not Covered LEED-EB Platinum 50% 3 years
Not Covered LEED-EB Gold 25% 3 years
Not Covered LEED-EB Silver 10% 3 years

Property taxpayers must apply for the tax credit within one year after a building is certified as a high performance building. There is a limit of $5 million per fiscal year (July 1 - June 30) on the total volume of tax credits granted, and limits of $1.5 million and $2.5 million for buildings rated LEED Silver and LEED Gold respectively. Credits in excess of these limits will be issued for the subsequent fiscal year or years.