Renovator Faces $51K RRP Fine
Federal authorities have hit a San Francisco Bay-area renovator with a $51,000 fine for allegedly violating lead-based paint regulations while performing work on foreclosed homes.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) alleges that Blue Mountain Air, of Vacaville, CA, violated EPA’s Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule in 2011 and 2012 while renovating foreclosed homes in Napa, El Sobrante and Santa Rosa.
The enforcement action comes three weeks after the EPA's Region 9 announced RRP settlements with nine other California construction companies.
Blue Mountain Air, along with Blue Mountain Realty, is a subsidiary of Blue Mountian Inc., owned by Greg S. Owen.
Blue Mountain Air provides heating and cooling services to homeowners in California and Nevada, according to its website.
The company did not respond Thursday (Nov. 13) to a request for comment.
Specifically, the EPA says Blue Mountain failed to:
“Lead-based paint is the main source of lead poisoning for children, which can cause learning disabilities and behavior problems,” Jared Blumenfeld, EPA’s Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest, said it a statement accompanying the announcement.
“EPA will take enforcement action against companies that operate without the training and certification needed to protect children, families and workers.”
The U.S. banned lead-based paint from housing in 1978 but EPA estimates that more than 37 million older homes in the U. S. still have lead-based paint.
The EPA enforces the federal Toxic Substances Control Act and its RRP rule to protect children from exposure to lead-based paint hazards from renovation and repair activities that can create hazardous lead dust when surfaces with lead-based paint are disturbed.
EPA's RRP Rule is designed to prevent exposure to lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards.
Contractors who disturb painted surfaces in pre-1978 homes and child-occupied facilities must be trained and certified, provide educational materials to residents, and follow safe work practices.
EPA’s Region 9 also recently announced settlements with nine California construction companies that were not EPA-certified to handle lead-based paint safely before or during renovations to older housing and schools.
The companies that settled with the EPA were:
Each company was ordered to pay a $1,000 civil penalty, and in most cases, required to complete training and obtain certification, according to the EPA.