Remodelers who are certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to work on homes that may contain lead paint under the Lead: Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) rule now have the option to complete refresher training online, according to an EPA announcement.
However, EPA re-certifications obtained via an online refresher course will be valid for only three years – versus five years for hands-on training courses – and can only be exercised every other re-certification cycle.
“As a longtime advocate for a simplified re-certification process, NAHB Remodelers appreciates that EPA’s changes provide some flexibility, but the limited and convoluted parameters of the online training option are unnecessarily complicated and could affect the number of renovators who opt to become re-certified,” said NAHB Remodelers Chair Tim Shigley, CGR, CAPS, CGP, GMB, GMR, a remodeler from Wichita, Kan.
“Whether they choose to refresh their training online or in person, with the March 31 re-certification deadline looming for over 100,000 remodelers, and thousands more later in 2016 and 2017, remodelers are left with precious little time to meet their re-certification obligations.”
Additionally, certified renovators who were grandfathered in under a HUD or EPA lead-based paint training course before the RRP rule was adopted must attend a refresher course with a hands-on component. The rule also made several streamlining and clarifying changes to RRP provisions that apply to training providers.
EPA’s changes only apply to those states where EPA administers the program. The 14 states that administer their own programs will have to take legislative or regulatory action to adopt the online refresher course option.
The White House Office of Management and Budget released the final rule to EPA on Jan. 21.
For online or in-person refresher training, remodelers should contact their local home builders association, or they can find a course on EPA’s website. More information on how to determine specific deadlines can be found using NAHB’s “What You Need to Know about EPA Lead-Safe Re-certification.”