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CHICAGO—On July 23, the City Council’s Zoning Committee will consider an energy benchmarking ordinance proposed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel that would require municipal, commercial and residential properties with more than 50,000-square-feet to track and publicly report their energy usage. Other cities such as New York, Washington, DC, Boston and Minneapolis have enacted similar legislation. But BOMA/Chicago, the organization that represents most downtown building owners, says that while they support the idea of tracking and reducing energy use, they also believe the public reporting provision will stigmatize older buildings that frequently struggle to increase energy efficiency.

“We’ve been working with and talking with the mayor’s office about this ordinance for over a year,” says Michael Cornicelli, executive vice president of BOMA/Chicago. “We support the notion of the benchmarking itself, but what we object to is where they want to post, probably on a city website, the scores of each building. Every older class C or class B building can’t get a LEED Gold certification.”

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