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Healthy homes conference Part 1

October 29th, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

This week I was a speaker at the 2011 Lead Poisoning Prevention Conference in Springfield, IL that was about so much more than lead poisoning. It was really about healthy homes and covered a wide range of topics.  What I learned was so valuable that I will be writing various posts about it and adding new links to this site that contain valuable information. The conference was put on by the Illinois Department of Public Health, St. John’s Children’s Hospital, Kohl’s Department Stores and the Illinois Public Health association.

One of the ways that local jurisdictions are enforcing the renovation, repair and painting requirements of the EPA with regards to lead paint, is to refuse to issue a building permit to a contractor who is working on a pre-1978 residence if it does not qualify as an exception to the law unless the contractor provides proof of certification as a renovation firm.  I spoke with the inspector from Rock Falls, IL who follows this procedure.  He told me that under his code, he is responsible for enforcing federal, state and local statutes so he has authority to take this action.  But, before implementing this, he contacted a trainer who agreed to come out to Rock Falls and train, at a discount, any contractor who wanted to sign up for a weekend training. It was a huge success because it was convenient and the price was right.  He’s been able to get hundreds of firms qualified to do the work. This is a great example of a creative solution and I wanted to share it.  He says the program is running smoothly and he has very few problems.

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