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EPA cites Allied Realty Co. for not notifying D.C. and Maryland tenants about lead-based paint
Release Date: 09/11/2006
Contact Information: Roy Seneca (215) 814-5567
PHILADELPHIA - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has cited Allied Realty Corp. of Bethesda, Md., for violating a federal law requiring home sellers and landlords to disclose information on lead-based paint to prospective purchasers and tenants. According to EPA, Allied Realty failed to disclose information on lead-based paint to tenants in 16 rental properties in Washington, D.C. and its Maryland suburbs.
Under the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992, sellers and landlords of residential housing built before 1978 (when the federal government banned the sale of lead-based house paint) are required to notify purchasers and tenants about the presence of known lead- based paint or disclose their lack of knowledge as to the presence thereof. The law also requires landlords to provide a lead-based paint information pamphlet to prospective tenants, provide a standard warning statement in the lease on the dangers of lead-based paint and include disclosure and acknowledgment language in sales contracts and leases.
EPA's administrative complaint cites 82 violations of the regulations implementing the lead-based paint disclosure rule, involving 19 lease agreements for 16 rental properties signed between November 2001 and May 2004. Among the cited violations are failure to disclose known lead-based paint to prospective tenants, failure to provide available reports regarding lead-based paint and failure to provide lead-warning statements in leases.
The Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act provides for a maximum penalty of up to $11,000 per violation. EPA will propose a specific penalty after giving the company an opportunity to provide relevant information. The company has the right to a hearing to contest the alleged violations and proposed penalty.
EPA is cooperating with other federal, state, and local agencies to protect tenants and homeowners from the health risks of lead-based paint. High blood levels of lead can cause permanent damage to the nervous system and widespread health problems, such as a reduced intelligence and attention span, hearing loss, stunted growth, reading and learning problems and behavioral difficulties. Young children, in particular, are most vulnerable because their nervous systems are still developing. For more information on environmental, health, and legal issues involving lead, please visit https://www.epa.gov/lead/index.htm.