Lead exposure in heavy doses can make you sick; so can the heavy fines by the EPA if your documentation is not correct.

The EPA has expanded its enforcement of its lead paint regulations which became effective in 2011. The regulations are intended to protect children from lead poisoning, which can cause major health problems including profound developmental and neurological impairment.

Reports to NAHB indicate that enforcement of the Lead Repair, Renovation, and Painting rule (LRRP) is in the area of paperwork. Specifically, EPA is focusing on proper documentation of compliance with the rule. Enforcement actions have involved failure to distributed the brochure informing consumers of the rule, distributing the brochure but failing to properly document its distribution, and other omissions and errors in documentation. Of course some contractors also have been cited for failing to complete required training and registration with the EPA. Fines of $37,000 per violation are common.

Don’t put yourself and your company at risk; fully comply with the LRRP rule.

About Lead Repair, Renovation, and Painting rule
The LRRP rule, which took effect on April 22, 2010, requires that remodelers and contractors working in homes built before 1978 to be trained and certified by the EPA on lead-safe work practices before they can legally work on those homes. Enforcement commenced in 2011.

At the time the rule was initially proposed the owner of the home or building could opt out of the more expensive work practices only if there were no children under the age of 6 or pregnant women present. Before implementation the rule was revised and the opt out provision was removed. There is no opt out for the rule at present, which added more than $336 million annually in compliance cost to the remodeling community.

What your HBA is doing about it
However, House and Senate bills have been introduced to reinstate the opt-out provision, reduced fines for minor paperwork errors found during an inspection, and allow for an exemption to the regulation for emergency renovations. Click here to find out more about how the NAHB and Bipartisan efforts in Washington will help.

You can also visit the EPA’s website to find out more about Lead hazards and Lead- Safe Practices. Click here for FAQs about EPA lead documentation standards.