Information from the Desk of Operations: New York is Serious About Local Law 87

ken_camilleri_16 Kenneth Camilleri continuing series for MANN Report Management.
Originally published in MANN Report Management – January 2016
Local Law 87 is such an important issue to building owners and property managers who own/manage buildings of 50,000 square feet or greater that it bears repeating in this space. New York City LL87 requires filing an Energy Efficiency Report (EER) with the Department of Buildings. The EER consists of a comprehensive energy audit under ASHRAE Level 2 standards and a retro-commissioning study of base building systems. The law requires building owners to perform the EER in order to generate hard data about their buildings’ energy performance, with a requirement to improve energy efficiency. Compliance with LL87 is based on the last digit of the tax block number as it coincides with the year. For example, in the remaining days of 2015, buildings with a “5” as the last digit in the tax block number, should be about ready to file the report with the DOB.

If the process has not begun, it will be hard to complete it by December 31st and those owners will most likely be subject to a violation and a $3,000 fine for the first year and an additional $5,000 fine for any subsequent year. What is important to understand is that a LL87 EER is a lengthy process, with responsibilities on both the management/owner end as well as the auditor and should be started as early as possible within the calendar year. In other words, start your 2016 projects now. If you own or manage a building with a “7” at the end of the tax block number, you have plenty of time before you need to start. Early compliance is no longer acceptable.

During this time, it is advisable for all property managers to go through their inventory of buildings to ensure none are left behind. If a building is close to the 50,000 square foot mark and there are questions about whether or not it needs to comply, there are two resources one should check. The first is the LL87 Covered Building List. The list, generated from the NYC Mayors Office of Sustainability, details all buildings that need to be benchmarked as LL84 and need to comply with LL87. If the building in question is not on the Covered Building List but is within the 50,000 square foot range, it is also advisable to verify the building square footage against the Department of Finance records. Verification through these two resources should suffice as an indication of whether or not a building needs to comply. An email to the is always a third option if the building in question falls in the criteria described.

In order to properly prepare for a Level 2 DOB audit in advance of an EER completion, here are some measures typically flagged:
  • Cleaning of all supply and return ductwork, along with properly functioning fans and motors;
  • Exterior doors need to work as intended and all gaps to be mitigated with door sweeps and weather stripping;
  • Boiler needs to be tuned to achieve 83 percent as required by the DEP standards;
  • All piping and mechanical equipment in the building shall be without leaks, both water and steam;
  • All pipes, hot and chilled water and steam lines three inches or greater are to be insulated inclusive of damaged insulation due to water damage;
  • Domestic water throughout the building must be consistent within the acceptable range and to prevent scalding;
  • Lighting levels are to be within acceptable limits in all common areas.
It is also very important to know that the DOB takes the Energy Efficiency Reports very serious and with the increase in efficiency of each building, is constantly looking to meet the City’s goal of an 80 percent decrease of greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 from 2005 levels. If you or your colleagues have any questions related to Local Law 84 and 87, please feel free to email me at
Kenneth Camilleri, Director of Operations Original Energy
500 Executive Boulevard Elmsford,
NY 10523