U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), senior member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, today reintroduced the Lead Exposure Reduction Amendments Act of 2013, which would improve the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule (LRRP) in order to increase compliance. The following are cosponsors of the legislation, Sens.David Vitter (R-La.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), and Tom Coburn (R-Okla.).
"I am pleased to reintroduce this important bill that reduces the regulatory burdens placed on homebuilders and remodelers by the EPA," said Inhofe. "It is important that we take appropriate actions to protect vulnerable populations from the harmfuleffects of lead exposure, but it is imperative that these regulations are not unnecessarily burdensome and costly.
"Currently, the EPA requires contractors to follow extensive safety practices in a one-size fits all approach. Even if the home does not have lead paint or there is not an individual of the at-risk population residing in the home, contractors are required by the EPA to follow the LRRP safety measures which in turn dramatically increase the costs of renovation work. My bill would allow homeowners to opt out of the rule if the home does not place those in the at-risk population in direct harm of lead exposure. It would also require the EPA to develop working test kits to ensure that contractors have the ability to determine whether lead paint actually exists in project homes."
The Lead Exposure Reduction Amendments Act of 2013 would accomplish the following:
*Restore the "opt-out provision" which would allow homeowners without small children or pregnant women residing in them to decide whether to require LRRP.
*Suspend the LRRP for homes without small children or pregnant women residing in them, if EPA cannot approve one or more commercially available test kits that meet the regulation's requirements.
*Prohibit EPA from expanding the LRRP to commercial and public buildings until EPA conducts a study demonstrating the need for such an action.
*Provide a de minimus exemption for first-time paperwork violations and provides for an exemption for renovations after a natural disaster.
*Eliminate the requirement that recertification training be "hands on," preventing remodelers having to travel to training facilities out of their region.