DESCRIPTION OF THE STRATEGY
Strong enforcement powers and sufficient resources to compel compliance are essential to any effective lead poisoning prevention program. In order to ensure that lead hazards cited by violation orders are controlled when property owners fail to act, enforcement officials can be authorized to abate hazards using agency or contractors’ crews and recoup the costs along with any unpaid penalties by placing a lien on the property.
Homes containing lead hazards are immediately made lead-safe.
The cycle of poisoning, where one unit poisons multiple children, is stopped.
Since the agency is carrying out or overseeing the work, it is more likely to be done correctly and without harming current occupants.
Scope of Potential Impact
Regional (e.g. multi-county)
City - or - County - Wide
Code or Building Inspection Agency
Limited to writing lead hazard control work specifications, ensuring acceptable completion including clearance, and administrative communications to collect costs or impose lien.
Other resource requirements:
Access to qualified crews, contracted or in-house, to perform the lead hazard control.
Agencies will need statutory authority to enter the premises and do the work, as well as to place a lien on the property. In addition, the agency will need capacity to perform independent clearance testing.
Need for working capital or other financing to pay for the repair work pending recovery of costs when the property is sold or refinanced.
Moderate. Political will is needed to supersede owners’ rights, to allow the city or its agents authority to enter the property and perform lead hazard control, and to impose liens. Strategy is best used within a continuum of approaches that include voluntary compliance and financing mechanisms.
May require relocation of occupants; these costs would be included in the owner indebtedness to the city.