[Washington DC] -The
Window and Door Manufacturers Association (WDMA) commends the
introduction of legislation last night in the U.S. Senate that would
reform the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Lead:
Renovation, Repair and Painting (LRRP) Rule to reduce the burden the
regulation has placed on the home retrofit market while protecting
pregnant women and small children from lead hazards. The Lead Exposure Reduction AmendmentsAct
of 2013 (S. 484) was introduced by Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) and six
cosponsors Wednesday night.WDMAhas been working toward re-introduction
of the the legislation in the Senate following the introduction of a
Senate bill in 2012 that expired at the end of the last congressional
session.In addition to Senator Inhofe, the original cosponsors of S. 484 areSens.
Roy Blunt (R-MO), Tom Coburn (R-OK), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Deb Fischer
(R-NE), Charles Grassley (R-IA), and David Vitter (R-LA).
"Since the EPA Lead Rule took effect
in April 2010, EPA has expanded the rule beyond its original goal of
protecting pregnant women and small children while mismanaging the
implementation of the rule and failing to meet its own requirements to
produce an accurate test kit," said WDMA President Michael O'Brien."The
Inhofe bill is a common-sense response which will refocus efforts on
protecting pregnant woman and small children and we applaud Senator
Inhofe for his leadership on this issue."
LRRP rule requires renovation work that disturbs more than six square
feet on the interior of a pre-1978 home and all window and door
replacement to follow rigorous and costly work practices supervised by
an EPA-certified renovator and requires that it be performed by an
EPA-certified renovation firm.In July 2010, EPA removed the "opt-out
provision" from the rule which allowed homeowners without children under
six or pregnant women residing in the home to allow their contractor to
forego the use of the rigorous work practices required by it. By
removing the opt-out provision, EPA more than doubled the number of
homes subject to the LRRP Rule, and EPA has estimated that this
amendment adds more than $336 million per year in compliance costs for
homeowners and contractors.
addition, despite EPA stating a commercially available test kit
producing no more than 10 percent false positives would be on the market
when the rule took effect in 2010, no test kit on the market meets this
standard. The lack of EPA approved test kits meeting the rule's
standard for false positives has added millions in compliance costs with
consumers paying for unnecessary work because of false positive test
window and door retrofit market has been key to sustaining the industry
and preserving jobs as housing slowly recovers from a prolonged
downturn.EPA's efforts to expand the Lead Rule beyond its
original scope, inaccurate test kits, and enforcement actions targeted
mainly at certified renovators has only hindered industry recovery
efforts," added O'Brien.
Among its key provisions, S. 484 would restore the "opt-out" clause, suspend the rule for owner-occupied housing built between 1960 and 1978 without a pregnant woman or small child living thereif EPA cannot approve a test kit meeting its own standard for false positives,
prohibit expansion of the rule to commercial buildings until EPA
conducts research demonstrating the need for such action, and provide a de minimis exemption for first-time paperwork violations.WDMA has made passage of S. 484 a top legislative priority.