In 1986, under the Toxic Substances Control Act, there was a deadline for the EPA to adopt “regulations on renovation or remodeling activities.”
In December 2005, after several lawsuits from child advocacy and environmental groups, the EPA announced the new rules. NARI, through the work of its Government Affairs Committee, provided comment and opposition to the rules in May 2006. NARI pointed out its long history of educating its members on lead-safe work practices but pointed out, too, that the new rules did little to achieve the goal of “eliminating childhood lead poisoning by 2010.” NARI also estimated that the job costs would be raised by 15% and insurance costs by 28%.
During that same time period, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) committed in excess of $250,000 to conduct research on lead, which NARI remodeling contractors assisted on, on both jobs sites and on certification training. This study caused EPA to conduct further research.
On April 22, 2008, the EPA published the final rules in the Federal Register, with critical dates attached, including the Dec. 22, 2008 date to start using the Renovate Right brochure and April 22, 2010, the date at which contractors had to comply with RRP.
Oct. 29, 2009, the EPA issued a proposed change to the LRPP rule after a ruling in Sierra Club v. EPA and had a 30-day comment period. This change mostly dealt with the opt-out provision, which stated that if there were no kids under the age of 6 or pregnant women living in the home, that the homeowner could opt-out of the contractor being certified and following the proscribed lead-safe work practices.
In March 2010, NARI joined an allied group of associations and corporations in requesting a delay of the April 22, 2010 implementation deadline. The lack of certified trainers—and certified firms—threatened to derail the HomeStar program, which proposes weatherization and retrofit work. NARI leaders met with the Office of Management and Budget, as well as congressional leaders and the EPA in order to explain how the LRRP implementation would impact NARI members’ business.
On April 22, 2010 the rule was implemented, and on May 6, the EPA published in the Federal Registry the removal of the opt-out rule (which will be effective July 6, 2010) and opened a comment period for further revisions to the rule. NARI will be communicating with its members to gather response for the open comment period.