The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has reached settlements with six residential home renovators in Missouri for alleged violations of lead-based paint regulations under the federal Toxic Substances Control Act.

“Reducing exposure to lead-based paint, especially among children, is a top priority for EPA,” said David Cozad, director of EPA Region 7’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Division. “The Agency is committed to ensuring that home renovators follow the law and protect tenants from exposure.”

The settlements include Kansas City area renovators Montgall LLC and Karin Ross Designs LLC; Woodard Cleaning and Restoration Inc., Starke Inc., and City Restoration & Revival LLC, all from the St. Louis area; and Springfield-based renovator The Window Dudes LLC.

Under the terms of the settlements, the companies agreed to pay civil penalties and to certify that they are in compliance with the law requiring the use of lead-safe work practices during renovations, known as the Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule.

The Agency uses an array of mechanisms to promote compliance and, thereby, reduce the risk of lead exposure. Enforcement actions result in the reduction of human exposure to lead paint, most importantly for vulnerable populations such as young children and pregnant women.

Lead-contaminated dust from chipped or peeling lead-based paint in homes built prior to 1978 is one of the most common causes of elevated blood lead levels in children, whose growing bodies absorb more lead than adults do, and their brains and nervous systems are more sensitive to the damaging effects of lead. Exposure can lead to irreversible and lifelong health effects. Lead dust can be generated when lead-based paint deteriorates or is disturbed.

Renovators of pre-1978 housing are required by federal law to obtain EPA certification or assign certified renovators to projects; to inform tenants of possible lead-based paint and/or known lead hazards; and to comply with work practice requirements intended to reduce lead-based paint exposure.

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