EPA reaches settlement with GB Group for lead-based paint violations in Oakland and San Francisco
SAN FRANCISCO (Feb. 14, 2022) – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a settlement with the GB Group, Inc., for failing to comply with regulations that protect the public from exposure to lead while residential remodeling is being performed. The firm, based in Gilroy, Calif., will pay a $137,804 civil penalty.
“Renovating older homes can expose residents and workers to hazardous lead-based paint and dust,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Martha Guzman. “Lead exposure has been a longstanding obstacle to advancing environmental justice, as many people of color and low-income residents live in communities that are overburdened by lead-based paint. EPA expects all renovation companies to ensure their contractors are trained, certified and follow lead-safe work practices to protect public health.”
EPA found that during renovation work at residential properties in Oakland and San Francisco, the GB Group failed to conduct pre-renovation education by not providing the Renovate Right pamphlet to homeowners and adult occupants. The GB Group also failed to assign a certified renovator to each renovation, did not follow work-site lead-safe practices, and failed to develop and maintain required records.
The enforcement action being announced today reinforces EPA’s commitment to addressing childhood lead exposure. Lead exposure can cause behavioral and learning problems, slowed growth, hearing problems and diminished IQ. Although the federal government banned residential use of lead-based paint in 1978, it is still present in millions of older homes, sometimes under layers of new paint.
The Renovation, Repair, and Painting Rule was created to protect the public (especially children under the age of 6) from lead-based paint hazards that occur during repair or remodeling activities in homes and child-occupied facilities built before 1978. The rule requires individuals performing residential renovations be properly trained, certified and follow lead-safe work practices.
Learn about the Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule and program: https://www.epa.gov/lead/renovation-repair-and-painting-program
Report a lead-based paint violation: https://www.epa.gov/lead/pacific-southwest-lead-based-paint-tips-complaints
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