HUD Reminds Owners to Maintain Lead-Based Paint Records
HUD’s Office of Multifamily Housing Programs recently issued Notice H2016-10 that reminds owners and management agents of HUD-assisted sites that they must maintain lead-based paint risk assessment and inspection records and lead disclosure forms as required by HUD’s Lead-Based Paint Poisoning Prevention regulations at 24 CFR Part 35.
The reminder is issued in part due to the tragic events in Flint, Mich., and elsewhere involving children and families harmed by lead in drinking water. These events serve as a critical reminder for HUD and its program participants to be ever vigilant for lead-based paint hazards in housing units, constructed before 1978, assisted under HUD programs, especially those in which children age 6 or under reside.
The notice stated that exposure to lead remains a major environmental health problem in the United States. The consequences of an elevated blood lead level, especially in young children under the age of 6, especially on neurological development, such as lowered IQ and behavioral problems, can be lifelong. Nationally, children’s blood lead levels have decreased since the banning of lead-based paint and leaded gasoline, among other federal actions. The greatest reductions have occurred among low-income and minority children, the groups most likely to have elevated blood lead levels, although these disparities persist.
HUD states that elevated blood lead levels among children are entirely preventable and that the primary source of childhood lead poisoning is lead-based paint, found in the majority of homes built before 1978.
The notice also informs owners and managers that a Real Estate Assessment Center (REAC) inspector soon will be inspecting one or more of their developments, asking to review their files to ensure they contain the requisite lead risk assessment or inspection records and lead disclosure forms. Where files don’t contain the required lead risk assessment or inspection records, and lead disclosure forms, then, in accordance with HUD’s regulations to make these records available to HUD (24 CFR 35.175), you’ll be asked to provide a copy of the missing reports and forms to your designated field office representative. An electronic copy is preferred, but if you’re unable to scan and email the materials, you can respond in email or writing to your designated field office representative to make alternate arrangements. If the property doesn’t meet the definition of target housing at 24 CFR Sections 35.86 and 35.110, no report is required.
Under HUD regulations in 24 CFR Part 35, all multifamily housing owners or management agents must have records of a lead-based paint evaluation (e.g., lead-based paint inspection or lead risk assessment), and completed lead-based paint hazard reduction. Regardless of the date of the testing and hazard control, the housing owner or management agent must maintain copies of these records and disclose them to residents according to HUD’s Lead Disclosure regulations in 24 CFR Part 35, Subpart A.