Our mission is to prevent lead poisoning from improper lead abatement activities. We are responsible for licensing lead abatement professionals, which includes lead abatement supervisors, lead abatement workers, lead inspectors, risk assessors and project designers. Individuals must attend training by a provider that is accredited by us in order to become licensed. These training providers are audited by us to determine compliance with state statutes and regulations. We also license lead abatement contractors, which are the companies or firms that employ the lead professionals. Random inspections of lead abatement contractors are conducted by us to ensure that they are in compliance with state statutes and regulations, including work practice standards.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates there are 1,327,626 housing units in Missouri with lead-based paint. Any housing built prior to 1978 may be considered suspect, although nationally, pre-1950 housing stock are considered most likely to contain lead-based paint.

In Missouri, an estimated 60% of dwellings built between 1960 and 1978 contain lead-based paint, with that number jumping to 80% for dwellings built between 1940-1959 and as high as 90% for pre-1949 dwellings.

Renovation, Repair, and Painting: Regulated by the U.S. EPA

In April of 2010, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) began enforcement of their Renovation, Repair and Painting regulations referred to as “Renovation” or “RRP.” These regulations focus on the use of lead safe work practices on all housing and child occupied facilities built prior to 1978. In brief, any contractor, performing any type of work that impacts more than six (6) square feet of an interior, or twenty (20) square feet of an exterior of painted surfaces in either of the aforementioned types of dwellings, must be a certified renovation firm and certified renovator’s for the employee. This does not include work performed in response to an Elevated Blood Lead Level (EBL) risk assessment investigation. Any work performed in connection with an EBL that is included in the definition of lead-based paint abatement should only be performed by licensed lead abatement contractors and individuals.

The RRP regulations have not altered federal or state regulations on lead abatement and anyone performing any abatement strategies (removal, replacement, enclosure and encapsulation) must still be licensed by Department of Health and Senior Services and provide notification to the Department as required. For more details on becoming a certified renovator or renovation firm, visit the EPA’s website or call the Region 7 EPA office at 1-800-223-0425.

Special Notice Concerning Paint-Chip Sampling

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recently published a rule update authorizing EPA-certified Renovators the option to collect paint chip samples for laboratory analysis in order to identify lead-bearing surfaces. 40 CFR Part 745 states in part, “in those states that do not permit persons other than certified inspectors or risk assessors to sample or test for lead-based paint, certified renovators will not be able to exercise this option.” Federal Register/Vol. 76, No. 151/Friday, August 5, 2011/Rules and Regulations, page 47,924. In Missouri, paint chip sampling must be performed by a licensed lead-based paint inspector or risk assessor. EPA-certified Renovators who are not licensed lead-based paint inspectors or risk assessors will not be able to utilize paint chip sampling to identify lead-bearing surfaces. Alternative testing options described in the RRP rule are still available for use by certified Renovators. If you have questions or concerns, please contact the DHSS Lead Licensing Program at (573) 526-5873 or toll free 888-837-0927.