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posted on April 22, 2010 08:57

 

NEWS RELEASE
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                    April 21, 2010                                                      
                                                                                                                                      
 
New Lead Rule for Home and Building Renovations Begins April 22, 2010  
 
 
The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare joins the Idaho Housing and Finance Association, and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, in urging homeowners and contractors to educate themselves on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) new Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) rule. 
 
According to the EPA, lead paint poisoning affects over one million children. Dust from renovation, repairs, and painting can contaminate an entire home, and if swallowed or breathed in, can cause irreversible damage to children and adults. Children under the age of six are at most risk for lead poisoning. To protect against this risk, EPA issued the Renovation, Repair and Painting rule. 
 
Under the rule, which goes into full effect this Thursday, April 22,  after its two-year phase-in, firms performing renovation, repair, and painting projects that disturb paint in homes, child care facilities, and schools built before 1978 must be certified by EPA and follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination. Each firm must have its representative overseeing the project trained by an EPA-accredited training provider in lead safe work practices. The firm must provide the occupants and owners with the EPA’s pamphlet, Renovate Right: Important Lead Hazard Information for Families, Child Care Providers, and Schools, which is available on EPA’s Renovation, Repair and Painting web site at www.epa.gov/lead/pubs/renovation.htm#content.  
 
Properties receiving housing assistance from HUD (or a state or local agency that uses HUD funds), must also follow the slightly more stringent requirements of HUD’s Lead-safe Housing Rule in order to ensure the appropriate level of protection according to the Federal investment of taxpayer dollars.
 
The EPA Renovation, Repair and Painting rule covers home improvement contractors, maintenance workers, painters, and other specialty trades like HVAC specialists, electricians, and plumbers. The rule does not apply to: 
  • Owner-occupied housing where children under the age of six and/or a pregnant woman do not reside;
  • Minor repair and maintenance activities that disturb six square feet or less of painted surface per room, or 20 square feet or less of exterior painted surfaces; and
  • Renovations where an EPA-approved testing method confirms that the paint to be disturbed is not lead-based paint.
 
Even though EPA’s Renovation, Repair and Painting rule does not apply to homeowners performing renovation, repair or painting work on their own home, they are strongly encouraged to read a copy of EPA’s Renovate Right pamphlet.
In addition to the pamphlet, the EPA Renovation, Repair and Painting website has much more information for affected parties. Other information on lead safety is available at www.epa.gov/lead/pubs/, www.hud.gov/healthyhomes, or by calling the EPA-HUD National Lead Information Clearinghouse (NLIC) at 1-800-424-LEAD (5323). Hearing- or speech-challenged individuals may access this number through TTY by calling the toll-free Federal Relay Service at 1-800-877-8339. To find a list of EPA Renovation, Repair and Painting certified firms in Idaho, visit EPA’s website athttp://cfpub.epa.gov/flpp/searchrrp_firm.htm or call the NLIC.
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