Remodeler Training and Certification Required by September 30 for EPA’s Lead Paint Rule

Environmental Law  

September 2010

The U.S. EPA’s Renovation, Repair and Painting rule requires lead-safe work practices for professional remodelers in homes built before 1978. Although the rule took effect on April 22, 2010, an enforcement guidance memo released by the U.S. EPA on June 18, 2010 indicated that in response to difficulties in obtaining the required certification and training, it is providing additional time for renovation firms and workers to obtain the necessary training and certifications before enforcement begins. Renovation firms will have until September 30, 2010 to obtain firm certification and individual renovators must enroll in training courses no later than September 30, 2010 and complete the training by December 31, 2010. According to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), remodelers’ and other contractors’ estimates of the additional costs associated with the lead-safe work practices average about $2,400, but vary according to the size and type of job.

The U.S. EPA’s enforcement guidance memo asserts that a disturbing number of children are still poisoned by lead-based paint in their homes leading to learning and behavioral disorders. Provisions of the rule that allowed renovators to opt out of these requirements if no children under six or pregnant women live in the house were removed in the final version of the rule that went into effect on July 6, 2010. In response to the final version of the rule, the NAHB and other industry groups filed suit against EPA challenging the EPA’s removal of the opt-out provision. According to a press statement from NAHB Chairman Bob Jones, the opt-out provision more than doubles the number of homes subject to the regulation and extends the rule to consumers who need no protection.

The information in this newsletter is not intended to provide specific legal advice. You should consult with an attorney and not rely on any information contained herein regarding your specific situation.