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Nevada Charter Schools to comply with asbestos regulations

Release Date: 10/31/2011
Contact Information: Margot Perez-Sullivan (415) 947-4149,

SAN FRANCISCO –The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has worked with 12 Nevada charter schools to address violations of the Asbestos Hazard Emergency Response Act (AHERA). Five of the schools are located in Clark County, and seven are in Wahsoe County.

In the past year, the EPA discovered that the 12 charter schools had not been inspected to determine if asbestos-containing materials were present in the schools’ buildings and no asbestos management plans for the schools were created.

Asbestos, found in two of the schools, can endanger the health of students, teachers, and employees. Asbestos exposure can lead to diseases such as lung cancer, asbestosis, and mesothelioma. All nonprofit schools, including charter schools, need to conduct asbestos inspections and have asbestos management plans. Federal law requires that local education agencies must conduct an initial building inspection using AHERA-accredited inspectors to determine if asbestos-containing building material is present and a management plan must be developed.

As a result of the EPA’s inspections, the schools have hired accredited inspectors to prepare a management plan for each school, and conduct further inspections. Under AHERA, local education agencies must appoint a designated person who is trained to oversee asbestos activities and ensure compliance with federal regulations. Finally, schools with asbestos-containing materials must conduct periodic surveillance and re-inspections, properly train the maintenance and custodial staff, and maintain records documenting those activities in its management plan.

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