EPA to Require Glazing Contractors be Certified for Lead Abatement by April 2010
December 28, 2009

According to the December 2008 Small Entity Compliance Guide to Renovate Right, EPA's Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair and Painting Program (RRP), contractors (including those who replace windows) who disturb painted surfaces in pre-1978 homes are required to be certified in lead abatement before these regulations become effective in 2010. Companies that don't comply with the regulation can be fined $32,500 per violation, per day for non-compliance. Many glazing contractors have remained unaware of the impact the coming regulations will have on them. And this impact may be even more severe if a rule proposed in October 2009 by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) goes into effect that would remove an opt-out clause. The "opt-out" provision currently exempts a renovation firm from the training and work practice requirements of the rule where the firm obtains a certification from the owner of a residence he or she occupies that no child under age six nor pregnant woman resides in the home and the home is not a child-occupied facility.

These new regulations also have implications for contract glaziers. While exempt from emergency repair work, for non-emergency repairs the contract glazier would be held to the same guidelines as anyone else. According to the RRP, contract glaziers disturbing painted surfaces on a non-emergency repair in a pre-1978 home that is more than 6 square feet in any particular room (interior) or more than 20 square feet per side (exterior) must follow lead-safe work practices. Considerations for contract glaziers working on these jobs include determining whether the glazing compound was painted over; whether the glazier would be disturbing any painted surface; and checking to see whether the painted surface is on the interior or exterior.

In an EPA press release dated October 22, Steve Owens, assistant administrator for the Office of Prevention, Pesticides and Toxic Substances, said the proposed rule will further increase protections for children and their families from lead-based paint hazards associated with home renovation and repair. In the press release, the EPA said it expects to finalize the rule by April 2010.

The RRP applies to residential houses, apartments and child-occupied facilities such as schools and daycare centers built before 1978. It includes pre-renovation education requirements as well as training, certification and work practice requirements. According to the RRP it applies to "anyone who is paid to perform work that disturbs paint."

"Renovation is broadly defined as any activity that disturbs painted surfaces and includes most repair, remodeling and maintenance activities, including window replacement," according to the RRP.

CLICK HERE to read more about the regulations.

CLICK HERE to let us know if you are aware of these regulations or have taken the certified renovator class. The USGNN.com staff would like to hear about how your company is preparing for these changes.

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