Up until now, remodelers have been able to sidestep most of the EPA’s lead paint rules — including the pre-renovation education provision in effect since 1999 — as long as they weren’t “abating,” or permanently eliminating, lead-based paint hazards. But beginning next year, projects that disturb more than 6 square feet of potentially contaminated surface inside a building or 20 square feet outside will be subject to the EPA’s 2008 Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting rule.

Most of the provisions of the new rule take effect April 22, 2010, when remodelers who work on homes or “child-occupied” businesses (such as schools or daycare centers) built before 1978 will need to be registered with the EPA and undergo certified lead-safety training. Work-practice and record-keeping procedures will also fall under the EPA’s...

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