Associations are known for their stances for or against government action, and the National Lumber and Building Materials Dealers Association (NLBMDA) is no exception.

In response to a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposal to modify the refresher training requirements under the Lead: Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) Rule, the association is urging the agency to adopt the proposal to eliminate the requirement that refresher training for a certified renovator have a hands-on component. NLBMDA supports the proposed change as certified renovators already have prior hands-on training and continue to perform hands-on work as a regular part of their job.

The RRP rule, which took effect in April 2010, requires renovation work in pre-1978 homes to follow rigorous work practices supervised by an EPA-certified firm and performed by an EPA-certified renovator. Renovators certified to perform RRP activities are currently required to complete a renovator refresher course within five years of the date the individual completed their previous renovator training to maintain certification. Renovators who received their initial certification before April 22, 2010, however, have until July 1, 2015, to take the refresher training to maintain certification.


“NLBMDA supports the EPA’s proposal eliminating the need for renovators certified to perform RRP activities to attend hands-on training as part of the re-certification process,” says Jonathan Paine, president and CEO. “The agency should move forward with its proposal to ensure those needing to re-certify in 2015 will not be subject to the hands-on requirement.”


NLBMDA has been critical of the EPA’s implementation of the rule, including removal of the “opt-out” provision after the rule took effect. In July 2010, the EPA removed the “opt-out” provision from the rule that allowed homeowners without children under age six or pregnant women residing in the home to allow their contractor to forego the use of lead-safe work practices. Moreover, the EPA has failed to approve a lead paint test kit producing no more than 10 percent false positives, in violation of its own rules.


“NLBMDA will continue working with EPA to make the RRP rule less burdensome for lumber dealers without compromising the health and safety of pregnant women and young children,” said Paine.

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