Delay of Lead-Based Paint Rules Unlikely

May 2010Newsletters In the Zone

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) and many others—including associations and individuals—have requested an extension of the April 22 implementation date for the Lead Paint Rule. Under the rule, contractors performing renovation, repair and painting projects that disturb lead-based paint in homes, child care facilities and schools built before 1978 must be certified and must follow specific work practices to prevent lead contamination.

The EPA is saying that they announced this ruling two years ago and that they have been "working closely" with contractors to ensure they would be ready by April 22.

NAHB notes that the EPA did not begin a publicity campaign towards contractors until March 2010—barely six weeks prior to the certification deadline. The EPA, on the other hand, blames the contractors who have been ignoring their notices and have not been diligent enough.

From the EPA's perspective, the ruling was announced in plenty of time, and contractors have not been diligent enough or did not care enough to follow through. Again, from the EPA's perspective, this has nothing to do with the fact that the EPA itself has been slow to accredit people to teach the classes.

As of March 2010, the EPA has approved only 135 training providers—and only 14,000 renovators nationally have been certified in lead-safe work practices. By the EPA's own estimate, there are more than 200,000 contractors that must be trained and certified to meet the April 22, 2010, deadline.

However, it appears that the EPA has no intention of providing relief from the April 22 certification deadline.

For more information, please contact Robert W. Gundlach, Jr. at 215.918.3636 or [email protected].