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The code states that a return air vent cannot be placed within 10' of a furnace or water heater. I interpret this to mean 10' within the same space. If my furnace room is enclosed, can I place a return on the wall it shares with the living area?
 

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That is correct. Can not draw from within 10' of the appliance in that room but since the air will be coming from another room it's fine.
 
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