|Action||Initial promulgation of Lead-based Paint Renovation, Repair and Painting Regulation|
|Comment Period||Ends 7/23/2021|
COMMENTS ON 18VAC15-50, Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair and Painting Regulations.
Submitted by Bob Becker, Richmond City Health District, Lead Safe and Healthy Homes Initiative.
Although I work for the Health Department in the lead program, I am making these comments on my own. These comments do not represent a statement by the Richmond City Health District, or any other part of the Virginia Department of Health
Let me start by stressing the importance of regulations like these that protect Virginians, especially young Virginians, from the dangers of lead poisoning. The individual impacts of lead poisoning remain serious. Even lead poisoning levels that are below the current “reference value” (5 ug/dl) will cause decreased academic achievement, including lower IQ, increased attention disorders, and increased antisocial behaviors. The social and economic costs of this lead poisoning are huge.
In general, the proposed regulations are excellent. They show the solid work of the Board and staff in putting them together as well as a good understanding of all of the steps that need to happen to make this project a success.
I have a few specific comments/questions:
18VAC15-50-40, paragraph 3: We should add a clear requirement that the person claiming the exemption keeps a copy of the test results.
In general your regulations for training programs and testing of students seem broad enough to allow the Board to push for improvements where needed. I would suggest considering a “bad actor” provision in which a trainer or training program who has multiple violations is subject to a higher standard of conduct.
The record-keeping requirements of section 18VAC15-50-320 seem sufficient. I would like to add major addition. I want to suggest that the Board become the repository of all material that proves a dwelling unit is lead free. The language could be: “In addition to the record-keeping requirements of 40 CFR 745, all reports prepared by a certified inspector or certified risk assessor (certified pursuant to either Federal regulations at §745.226 or an EPA-authorized State or Tribal certification program) that find an entire dwelling unit to be lead free shall be electronically submitted to the Board. The Board shall maintain a publicly accessible listing, by address, of all such reports filed. Such properties shall be permanently exempted from the provisions of this section.” This language would ensure that property owners will not be wasting time or money inspecting dwellings that are lead-free.
Finally, I would urge the Board to take the next step in the process as seriously as they have taken the development of these regulations. The education of contractors will be critical to the success of this effort. Realizing the importance of this next phase, I am open to helping in whatever ways the Board suggests.