Monday, May 21, 2018

EPA Reaffirms RRP Lead Paint Rule, Estimates $5 Billion in Paybacks

EPA's economic review of the impact of the RRP rule reaffirms the
importance of lead regulation, particularly in areas of
improved public health and child development.


Last month, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) completed a review of its Lead-Safe Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule to determine its economic impact on small businesses. Since the review, EPA has announced there would be no changes to the RRP rule- citing a 150% to 500% payback in societal benefits due to increased lead safety regulation.

The RRP rule, which has been hotly contested by some contractors since it was enacted in 2008, was reviewed under Section 610 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act. This act requires government agencies to evaluated whether certain regulations negatively impact small businesses. Because small businesses account for more than 4 million lead projects a year, critics of the RRP rule feel that the EPA unfairly targets small business owners. They argue that lead-safe practices and certification are expensive, and criticize the amount of regulations around lead.

The review, however, found that the RRP rule accounts for an estimated $1.5 to $5 billion in societal benefits. These benefits are due to improved children's IQ and public health; a healthier, more educated population maximizes earning potential and growth at the micro and macro economic levels.

These payback estimates outweigh compliance estimates. The review provides an example where if contractors complied with RRP rule, about 211,000 children born in 2018 would be protected from lead poisoning and provide future benefits of $4.5 billion, or a return of $3.10 per dollar spent on RRP.

As a result of these findings, the RRP rule will remain unchanged.

EPA's analysis may put to rest unsubstantiated claims that the RRP rule isn't useful. With even more evidence of the importance of lead regulation, it's important for industry professionals to ensure local compliance. Since the RRP rule, childhood lead exposure has been significantly reduced- let's see it become eradicated.

To learn more about the 610 review, read the document here. To learn more about lead paint certification or to find a training class, visit Zack Academy's lead homepage. Zack Academy offers the most comprehensive online schedule and registration system for the RRP training classes across the US.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Lead Paint Manufacturer to Pay California $60 Million in Settlement

lead paint exposure
After 18 years in court, a lead paint manufacturer
must pay over $60 million to help remove lead paint
from homes across California.

After 18 years of litigation, a lead paint manufacturer is set to pay more than $60 million to remove the toxic material from homes across California.

Yesterday, NL Industries and the People of the State of California reached a landmark settlement to address concerns of lead paint in residential areas. Under the agreement, NL Industries will provide $60.18 million to Santa Clara, Los Angeles, Alameda,  Monterey, San Mateo, San Francisco, Solano and Ventura counties - and the cities of Oakland and San Diego.

 “For nearly two decades, we have been fighting to protect vulnerable young children from the very serious harms caused by lead paint. We are pleased that NL has decided to resolve this matter and that millions of dollars can now go to address the harms to children resulting from toxic lead paint in homes,” James R. Williams., Santa Clara County Counsel, said in a recent press release.

The lawsuit was filed in 2000 alongside other landmark lead paint cases in California. However, the suit gained significant traction last year when the California Court of Appeals upheld the Supreme Court's decision. The California Supreme Court decided to hold former lead paint manufacturers accountable for their contribution to the lead paint crisis in the state of California.

Beyond the $60 million payout, NL Industries has agreed under the settlement to immediately withdraw its support from a ballot initiative for the November 2018 election. This initiative would invalidate the California Supreme Court of Appeals ruling- and instead ask for taxpayers to front $3.9 billion for lead paint removal.

“Although NL does not agree with the ruling in the courts, and by settling does not admit to any of the claims in the case, NL would prefer that its limited financial resources be used to fund public health programs rather than be spent on continued litigation,” Andre Pauka, counsel for NL Industries, said in a recent press release.

The toxicity of lead paint is well documented and lead exposure is known to cause neurological and reproductive deformities as well as blood, bone and gastrointestinal health abnormalities. Acute lead exposure can lead to death, but advocates are most concerned about low-level exposure over a period of time- similar to what those who grow up in lead contaminated homes experience. Chronic lead exposure has been linked to irreversible cognitive delays and behavioral issues in children. Because disadvantaged children are most likely to experience lead poisoning, efforts have been made at both state and federal levels to reduce this health hazard. One such effort is getting lead paint out of old homes.

“The hazards of lead paint have created a public health crisis for communities in California and across our nation,” Dennis J. Herrera, San Francisco City Attorney, said in a recent press release.

Although a settlement has been reached with NL Industries, there are still two other defendants named in the lawsuit- ConAgra Grocery Products Company and The Sherwin-Williams Company. This case is still in trial.

To learn more about the lawsuit, visit the case summary. To learn more about lead paint and how to get involved in this dynamic industry, visit Zack Academy's lead homepage.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

New Partner: Retra Training Services Joins to Offer Lead & Asbestos Training

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Fort Lauderdale, FL (May 2, 2018) - Zack Academy (www.ZackAcademy.com), a national provider of certification and training courses, announced today that it has partnered with Retra Training Services to offer lead & asbestos training.

Based in Tampa, Florida Retra Training Services offers several lead paint and asbestos training courses in the Tampa area. Courses include Asbestos Contractor/Supervisor, Asbestos Worker/Handler, Asbestos Roofer Supervisor, and more. Retra Training Services’ next course Asbestos Inspector Refresher is essential for recertification as an Asbestos Inspector. The Asbestos Inspector refresher training recertifies individuals to survey, identify and assess the condition of asbestos and asbestos material and record and report the results. It also accredits any individual handling the collection of bulk samples of asbestos material or suspected asbestos material for laboratory analysis.

"As a fellow Florida-based trainer, Retra Training Services is a great addition to the Zack Academy Network. Its long list of asbestos training and lead paint courses will better expand our reach throughout Florida and help properly train even more construction professionals," said Zachary Rose, founder and CEO of Zack Academy.

About Retra Training Services:
Retra Training Services has been offering asbestos, lead, mold and OSHA training courses for over 25 years. We have trained thousand of individuals working for contractors, government agencies, schools, hospitals, and utilities as well as public & private enterprises. All of our training courses are approved in the state of Florida and some are approved in neighboring states as well. We offer your choice of live instruction training at our facility in Tampa, FL or convenient on-site training at your facility, and some online courses.

About Zack Academy:
Zack Academy is a leading online marketplace for career-oriented training and certification courses, offering classes and seminars across the United States in areas including software and programming training; construction; contractor licensing and renewal; lead, asbestos and mold certification; LEED exam prep; stormwater and water management; solar training; cleaning/restoration/water damage; business practices; analytics; and more. Zack Academy provides a one-stop shop for career and certification training in partnership with hundreds of local training companies across the United States.

Release Contact:
Peter Sfraga
Marketing Manager
646-564-3792