Rural Renewable Energy Development Zones

Rural Renewable Energy Development (RRED) Zones offer an incentive to encourage investments that either:

  • Harness wind, geothermal, solar, biomass or other unconventional forms of energy in Oregon to generate electricity, or
  • Produce, distribute or store any of a wide variety of biofuels.

Throughout Oregon, a city, county or several contiguous counties can set up a RRED Zone that covers all the territory in the jurisdiction(s) outside the urban growth boundary (UGB) of any large city or metropolitan area.

The abatement is the standard (3- to 5-year) exemption from local taxes on new property available in any enterprise zone, except that in a RRED Zone it is only for renewable energy activities (which also would be eligible if located in an enterprise zone). In addition, the total amount of property (among one or more projects) that can qualify is subject to a locally-set cap with each RRED Zone designation of $250 million or less in initial market value.

Since 2013, the local government sponsor (county) may waive the requirement to create full-time employment with new projects, if the cost of the investment is $5 million or more. This is like the $25 million wiaver in an enterprise zone, except that local additional conditions may not be imposed.