In February 2006, the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors approved a Green Building Policy for all county-owned or leased buildings. The standards were revised again in September 2009.
All new buildings over 5,000 square feet are required to meet LEED Silver certification levels, but only buildings over 25,000 square feet must actually register and be certified by the USGBC. For buildings between 5,000 and 25,000 square feet, the building design and the LEED checklist must be reviewed by a LEED Accredited Professional (AP) or LEED Green Associate. The AP or Green Associate must be a registered engineer or architect and must have worked on at least 1 LEED certified building. County-owned residential buildings may use GreenPoint Rated Guidelines instead of LEED.
New buildings must also use renewable energy systems to the extent practicable, are subject to water demand, plumbing, landscaping, and storm water runoff requirements.
For leased buildings, administration will strive for LEED Existing Building: Operation & Maintenance (EB:O&M) and/or LEED Commercial Interiors (CI) as appropriate.
The County is also working to develop a LEED EB:O&M Initiative for all existing buildings.