Lumber and Building Materials Dealers Lobby Congress on RRP Lead Paint Rule
ProSales Magazine reports that building material dealers from across the nation visited Capitol Hill on March 6th, 2012 to urge Congress to reconsider RRP regulations. The visits were organized by the National Lumber & Building Material Dealers Association (NLBMDA). (Read full story here) The visits followed a morning gathering at the group's annual Legislative Conference in which Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., and Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., both criticized the EPA, the arm of government responsible for the lead-paint rule, for hurting business.
"I wish we had an EPA that was helpful ... as opposed to the 'gotcha' approach, writing tough regulations… The best thing you could do for the environment is to have a strong economy. ... It seems the EPA has a disconnect on that."
Greg Walden, R-Ore.
Craig Webb, editor at ProSales reported that NLBMDA's criticism of RRP centers on three issues:
An opt-out provision that had been slated to be part of the regulation but was removed on the day it became final,
the trustworthiness of lead-paint dust detection kits,
and what NLBMDA regards as "misdirected enforcement" of the rule.
Those same three issues are addressed in the recent legislation introduced by Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla in his bill titled “the ‘‘Lead Exposure Reduction Amendments Act of 2012’’. (See this previous RRPedia post for more) Webb said NLBMDA's first priority during the Hill visits was to support the bill, encourage other Senators to co-sign it, and help to get companion legislation introduced in the House of Representatives.
According to Webb the dealers focused on the fact that, with the opt-in provision, the RRP would have affected 38 million homes, but taking that op-out option means 79 million homes were subject to the rule. In July 2010, NLBMDA and several other trade groups sued EPA for removing the opt-out rule, arguing that the agency had acted without any new scientific data and before the rule had even taken effect.
Contractors affected by the RRP rule have definitely benefited from the efforts of trade groups like NLBMDA. Lumber and building materials dealers who join such associations and become involved and proactive on important issues like the RRP rule stand out as true partners for the entire remodeling industry. Credit also to Craig Webb and ProSales Magazine for staying on top of these efforts and reporting them so all will know.