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LEGISLATION


EPA Changes


Members were encouraged to review the following proposed EPA changes and provide feedback to Ohio Valley NARI’s legislative committee in February of 2006.  All information was sent to NARI National for inclusion in a position paper that was submitted to the EPA on behalf of all NARI members.  Members were advised that the proposed rules will change work practices and affect project costs. 

Implementation of the last phase of this rule is scheduled for April of 2010.

New Requirements Proposed for Lead-Based Paint Work
(Washington, D.C.-Dec. 29, 2005) To reduce lead poisonings in children across the country, EPA is proposing new requirements for contractors and construction professionals when working in homes that contain lead-based paint.

"Under President Bush's leadership, we are addressing one of the greatest environmental challenges facing our most vulnerable residents: childhood lead poisoning,'' said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson. "Today's action brings us one step closer to ensuring that our nation's children are safe and healthy.''

Lead is a highly toxic metal that was used for many years in paint. Lead can cause a range of health effects, from cognitive impairment and learning disabilities, to seizures and death. Children under six years are most at risk because their developing nervous systems are especially vulnerable to lead's effects and because of their more frequent hand-to-mouth behavior.

Preventing the creation of new lead-based paint hazards from renovation activities in housing where children under six reside is one purpose of this proposed regulation. EPA's analysis indicates that renovation, repair and painting projects in housing that is likely to contain lead-based paint affects more than 1.1 million children under age six annually. In the absence of this regulation, lead-safe practices are not likely to be employed to perform the renovation projects.

EPA is proposing that contractors must be trained in the use of lead-safe work practices, renovators and firms be certified, providers of renovation training be accredited, and renovators follow protective work practice standards. These work practices include posting warning signs, restricting occupants from work areas, arranging work areas to prevent dust and debris from spreading, conducting a thorough cleanup, and verifying that cleanup was effective.

The rules would apply to all persons who do renovation for compensation, including renovation contractors, maintenance workers in multi-family housing, painters and other specialty trades. The new requirements would apply to most renovation, repair or painting activities where more than two square feet of lead-based paint is disturbed. EPA is proposing a two-phased approach. The first phase would apply to renovations in rental and owner-occupied housing built before 1978 where a child with an elevated blood lead level resides, in rental housing built before 1960, and owner-occupied housing built before 1960 where children under six reside. The second phase, to start a year after the first one takes effect, would apply to renovations covered in the first stage plus renovations in rental housing built between 1960 and 1978. The second stage also would apply to owner-occupied housing built between 1960 and 1978 where children under six reside.

In 1978, there were three to four million children with elevated blood lead levels in the United States. Significant progress has been made to reduce lead poisonings. As of 2002, an estimated 310,000 children had elevated levels of lead in their blood, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While the Consumer Products Safety Commission banned lead-based paint for residential use in 1978, more than 38 million homes in the United States still contain some lead-based paint. Two-thirds of the houses built before 1960 contain lead-based paint. This proposal is one component of a comprehensive program that will also include training and an education and outreach campaign to promote lead-safe work practices. EPA will take public comment for 90 days following publication of the proposal in the Federal Register. For more information or to obtain copies of the proposal and supporting materials, visit: http://www.epa.gov/lead/pubs/renovation.htm.

Proposed Rule Establishing Requirements To Protect Children During Renovation, Repair and Painting Activities that Disturb Lead-Based Paint (EPA-747-F-06-001, December 2005)

The Agency is proposing some simple but effective work practice standards that can reduce potential exposure to dangerous levels of lead for residents, especially children. These work practice standards and training requirements would apply to persons engaged in renovation, repair, and painting activities that disturb lead-based paint in housing built before 1978. This proposal is one component of a comprehensive program that will also include training and an education and outreach campaign to promote lead-safe work practices. This program will help to meet the goal of eliminating childhood lead poisoning as a major public health concern by the year 2010. While the Consumer Product Safety Commission banned lead-based paint for residential use in 1978, more than 38 million U.S. homes still contain some lead-based paint, with two-thirds of the houses built before 1960 containing lead-based paint. Renovation activities that disturb lead-based paint can create lead hazards. The proposal and additional information can be accessed on the Internet at http://www.epa.gov/lead.

What is covered by the proposed rule?
The proposed rule would apply to housing with lead-based paint built before 1978. EPA is proposing a two-phased approach, with the first phase focusing on rental and owner-occupied housing built before 1978 where a child has an elevated blood lead level, in rental housing built before 1960 and in owner-occupied housing built before 1960 where children under age six reside. The second phase would apply to renovations in rental housing built between 1960 and 1978 and to owner-occupied housing built after 1960 and before 1978 where children under six reside.

What does the proposal require?
The proposed rule, issued under the authority of section 402(c)(3) of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), would require that renovators are trained in the use of lead safe work practices, that renovators and firms be certified, that providers of renovation training be accredited, and that renovators follow renovation work practice standards. The standards would apply to all persons who do renovation for compensation, including renovation contractors, maintenance workers in multi-family housing, painters and other specialty trades.

What work practices are being proposed?
These are examples of work practices described in the proposal.• Renovations would be performed by certified firms.• Certified firms would use certified renovators to perform certain activities and would provide on-the-job-training for uncertified workers.• Firms would post signs clearly defining the work area and warning occupants and other persons not involved in renovation activities to remain outside of the work area.• Before beginning the renovation, the firm would isolate the work area so that no visible dust or debris leaves the work area while the renovation is being performed.• Waste from renovation activities would be contained to prevent releases of dust and debris.• After the renovation is complete, the firm would clean the work area. A certified renovator may verify the cleanliness of the work area using a procedure involving disposable cleaning cloths.

What are the responsibilities of the firm?
In the proposal, firms performing renovations would have to ensure that:• All persons performing renovation activities are certified renovators or have received on-the-job-training by a certified renovator; • A certified renovator is assigned to each renovation performed by the firm; and• All renovations are performed in accordance with applicable work practice standards.

How would a firm become certified?
Under the proposed rule, firms that perform renovations for compensation would apply to EPA for certification to perform renovations. Firms would have to apply for re-certification every three years.

How would renovators and sampling technicians become certified?
As proposed, a person can become:• A certified renovator by either successfully completing an accredited renovator training course, or being a certified lead-based paint abatement supervisor or worker; • A certified sampling technician by either successfully completing an accredited sampling technician course, or being a certified lead-based paint inspector or risk assessor.

To maintain certification, a person would complete an accredited refresher course every three years.

What is the role of the certified renovator?
As proposed, a certified renovator: • Performs or directs uncertified workers performing regulated renovation activities;• Provides training to uncertified workers on lead safe work practices;• Would be required to be at the work site during key stages of a renovation, and at other times be available on-site or by telephone and • May use an acceptable test kit to determine whether lead-based paint is present in affected areas.

What is the role of a certified sampling technician?
Although the proposed rule does not require that dust samples be taken or clearance testing, it does describe a certified dust sampling technician's role as one that collects dust samples, sends the collected samples to a recognized laboratory, and compares the results to established clearance levels.

How do training programs become accredited?
Under the proposed rule, training programs that wish to provide accredited renovation training would apply to EPA for accreditation to provide renovation or dust sampling training.

What role do the States have in this regulation?
The proposed rule contains procedures for the authorization of States, Territories, and Tribes to administer and enforce these standards and regulations in lieu of a federal program.

What is not covered by the proposal?
The proposal would not apply to:• Owner-occupied housing where children under six do not reside;• Minor repair and maintenance activities that disrupt two square feet or less of painted surface per component; and • Renovations where specified methods have been used to determine that the areas affected by the renovation are free of lead-based paint.

Where can I get more information?
For general information contact the National Lead Information Center at 1-800-424-LEAD. Information is also available on EPA's website at http://www.epa.gov/lead. For technical information regarding this rule, contact Mike Wilson or by phone at (202) 566-0521

Statewide Registration


Ohio Valley NARI, through its Government Affairs Committee, actively seeks information on state legislative issues facing those in the remodeling profession. During the past decade, members of Ohio Valley NARI have been instrumental in defeating proposed legislation that was deemed unfair or restrictive to remodeling professionals.

Ohio Valley NARI is not opposed to state-wide legislation regarding home improvement contractors or remodelers as long as it is fair and equitable to the professional. In order to provide the state with a viable option, the Government Affairs Committees of several Ohio NARI chapters are looking at the possibility of working with a state legislator to introduce a bill with providing for a state-wide registration system.

After researching the laws/programs states currently have on the books, the committee agrees that Connecticut has one of the most fair and unintrusive laws involving home improvement registration. The goal of the committee is to review the current law, its rules, policies and marketing collateral to see what should be modified or re-thought prior to introduction to a state representative for possible introduction.

If you would take a few minutes to review the following documents and then use the form to submit your input, we would appreciate it. We want to be sure that should some type of legislation be introduced and passed, it is fair and equitable not only to the consumer but to the remodeling/home improvement professional.

Please note that House Bill 461 was introduced in April 2004 and did not make it out of Committee. House Bill 148 was introduced on March 23, 2005 and has been assigned to the Commerce Committee. The sponsor's hearing has taken place and currently the proponent and opponent hearings have not yet been scheduled. Your feedback on this Bill is appreciated. For feedback, please click here.
Campaigning for Contractors
Why NARI and NKBA lobby against title and practice regulations (PDF Format)