Washington State Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule Program Update

Soil Control: The Most Significant Change in the New Law

Washington Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule differs from the EPA RRP Rule in just one area.  Soil control standards are the only significant change.  Please click here for the rule as written.

Let’s explain the meaning of this rule.

  • Soil replacement, or paving with asphalt or concrete is required in:
  • Bare soils in child play areas or gardens of any size containing lead at 250 ppm or more.
  • Areas of bare soils greater than 9ft² containing lead at 5,000 ppm or more.
  • Interim Controls may be used for other bare soils greater than 9ft² that are not play areas or garden areas.  These bare soils are greater than 9ft² containing lead at 1,200 ppm to 4,999ppm.
  • Ongoing monitoring requires  visual survey of the interim control area to verify that it protects from direct contact with soils.  The owner and occupants of the property must be given a written document to explain the frequency and visual survey method.
  • First visual survey at three months
  • Annual visual survey thereafter.

Washington State Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule Program Update

The Washington State Department of Commerce announced in April that it has begun administration and enforcement of new rules designed to protect children from lead-based paint poisonings. Washington State’s approach to these nationwide rules for lead-safe work practices focuses on training and education, including reducing the cost of each certification to just $25 each, for firm and individual certification — saving contractors an estimated $250.

Please ask your local organization to invite us to one of your industry, trade or community meetings.  We enjoy coming to these events, and they help serve us with our mission to inform the community about our newly delegated authority.

As we deliver our presentations, we ask those gathered to share ideas and ask their colleagues, in other parts of our state, to include us in their meetings.  We want to get out the word to all regions of our state.

To set up an informational meeting, contact Commerce’s Lead-Based Paint Program at 360.586.LEAD (5323) or visit www.commerce.wa.gov/lead.

Earlier this year we met with the Building Industry Association of Washington at their Olympia meeting.  Members who were present came from all regions of the state.  From this meeting we have been asked to speak with the Kitsap and Mason County Chapter of the International Code Council, the Remodeler’s Group of the King/Snohomish County Master Builders Association (MBA), and the Pierce County MBA.

Washington is the 11th state to take over management of the Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The new nationwide rule requires that construction and maintenance professionals who perform renovation, repair and painting work in housing, child-care facilities and schools built before 1978 must use “lead-safe work practices.”

Prior to the addition of this new rule, the requirement for lead-safe work practices applied to designated lead-abatement projects only. Today, the renovation program addresses the threat from dusty renovations performed in homes built before 1978. Renovator training certification and enforcement ensures that work is done with low-dust measures, which safeguards families.

Through the Department of Commerce program, Washington State will charge $25 for certification. If Commerce finds someone in violation of a code section, a minimum $500 fine will be issued. First-time violators will be offered a six-month grace period for the firm or individual to take the certification course. After completion of the course, the fine may be reduced.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About New Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule

Q: When you say in your correspondence, “Renovator” do we apply the same requirements for registration as a Dust Sampling Technician?
A:  Yes

Q:  How is the fee for Renovator certification registration to be collected?
A: It is collected by Washington Accredited Training Providers.  They may collect checks from each individual trained renovator or write one check for all.

Q:  Can a student write a check directly to Commerce for his Renovator registration?
A:  Yes.  Training Providers may collect each trainee’s check or some trainee’s checks, but must send the registration fee for all students’ renovator registration fees with renovator post-notification to Commerce.

Q:  How many days after post training notifications and fees are submitted will the Renovator registration of certification post cards be sent to the student?
A:  We will try to be very prompt in sending out all certifications.  We anticipate a 10-day time period for Renovators to receive their registration post cards.  NOTE: We do not intend to cite a Renovator who has received a valid training certification from a training firm under a Washington accredited training provider.  Penalties would be assessed only when a Renovator had no Commerce registration of his/her Renovator certification six weeks after course completion.

Q:  Will Trained Renovators be able to go to work before their certifications are registered with Commerce?
A:  Yes.  They will have a six-week grace period to work without having received their registration.  To work in Washington without registration of their Renovator certification is a violation of WAC 365-230-380 which carries a minimum $500 penalty.

Q:  What method are you using to notify the applicant that they have been registered as a Renovator?
A:  A postcard will be sent to each grandfathered-in or newly trained Washington Renovator.

Q:  What needs to be included on Renovator certification cards and certificates provided by Training Providers?
A:  A reference must include “Washington Administrative Code 365-230” to indicate you have accredited training through Washington State. This became effective on March 16, 2011.

Q:  Will there be an online payment option at Commerce for fees?
A:  No.  Commerce can accept checks or money orders as the only payment option at this time.

Q:  Within 10 days we (Training Firms) would be sending a class roster and sending a check for registration of certified Renovators.  Is this correct?
A:  Yes.  WAC 365-230 requires a post training notification within ten business days of the class.

Q:  Is Commerce issuing the Renovator Certification?
A:  No.  Training firms will continue to provide their certification cards and/or certificate in the same manner as they had with EPA.  Commerce Lead-Based Paint Programs will register each Certified Renovator.

Q:  Will testing of Renovators be done by Commerce Lead-Based Paint Programs?
A:  No.  Testing will continue to be done by the Training Providers.

Q:  Will we need to send a photograph for each Renovator to Commerce Lead-Based Paint Programs?
A:  If your firm was accredited by EPA to issue a Renovator Certification Card with photo, then continue to do so; do not send a photo to Commerce.  If you do not issue a wallet photo card, then please do send a photo of Renovators you certify.

Q:  What will be the ratio of students/instructors for the hands-on portion of the Renovator training?
A:  Ten to one student/instructor ratio for hands-on.  A total of 25 students maximum per class is permitted.  Commerce Lead-Based Paint Programs will offer the same S/I ratio as it stands, or as EPA authorizes in the future.  All Renovator guest instructors’ information must be provided to Commerce.

Q:  Will Training Firms continue to use the same training manuals?
A:  Yes.

Q:  What must Training Providers do to add new Principal Instructors?
A:  You must notify Commerce of the addition within 30 days and submit the documentation demonstrating the appropriate qualifications.

Q:  Do Training Firms file applications for Renovation Firms, and send the fee?
A:  No.  Firm Application and fees are filed by the Renovation Firms for Firm Certification directly to Commerce.

Q:  How will you notify EPA Certified Renovation firms based in Washington that they are grandfathered-in as a Certified Washington State Renovation firm?
A:  We will send out a postcard that will tell them they are registered as a Renovator Firm without a fee.  And it instructs them that the expiration date runs concurrent with the EPA expiration date.  At such time they may continue to hold both EPA and Washington certifications which allows them to work in many other states besides Washington.