Lead Test Kits

by: NARI on the Hill - November Edition

On October 26, NARI representatives attended the latest RRP Implementation meeting. These meetings are comprised of interested stakeholders from industry, environmental groups, and the government. At each meeting, different divisions from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) talk with the group about the implementation of the lead paint program. In this last meeting, one of the items discussed was EPA's continuing efforts to address the Lead Test Kit issue.

In 2008, the EPA published the Lead Renovation Repair and Paint rule, which set negative and positive response criteria for lead test kits recognized by the EPA. To date, no test has been developed that meets both criteria, so last year Congress directed EPA to identify solutions that would allow for a test kit that meets all the criteria specified in the 2008 rule. EPA has held a number of meetings on this issue and has requested comments from the public.  NARI was one of the groups that submitted comments to EPA.

At the October RRP meeting, EPA reported that the comments the Agency has received generally fall into three areas:

1) Test Kit modification - Encourage the EPA to modify the positive test kit requirement
2) XRF - Reduce the certification for XRF
3) Narrow the scope of the RRP program - Specifically, comments encouraged limiting the RRP program to those houses built before 1960, and implementing a limited opt out for those homes built between 1960 and 1978

The EPA representative said they are currently engaging in internal discussions. The Agency has no timeframe for when they anticipate coming to a conclusion, however, the representative did say they hope to have a final action next year.

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