KRC supports the bill with amendments that would:
a) protect renters from retaliatory eviction by landlords who are notified of lead hazards and fail to correct them,
b) change the phrase "risk assessment" to "risk characterization" in order to distinguish the investigation from assessment of the risks discovered;
c) empower the cabinet to seek injunctive relief to compel remediation of lead hazards rather than merely imposing fines or determining a dwelling unfit for habitation; and
d) define "elevated blood lead levels" as any blood lead level at or above 1 microgram per deciliter (ug/dL), rather than 10.
Recent peer-reviewed health studies indicate that the current action limit (10 ug/dL) is not protective of the health of children. According to the December 2005 study published in Environmental Health Perspectives, Reduced Intellectual Development in Children With Prenatal Lead Exposure, fully half of the harmful effects of lead on child IQ occurred when third trimester blood lead levels increased from 1 to 6 micrograms per deciliter, well below current action levels.
"When maternal BPb reached current Mexican and US action limits for children and pregnant women (10 ug/dL), a majority of the adverse consequences on later child IQ associated with lead in the measured range had already occurred. If we continue to accept the current action limit, we also accept that most of the "damage" to the IQ of children associated with third trimester lead exposure in our sample is permissible".
I hope that the Committee will take action in the bill, with these recommended amendments, in order to allow for more timely identification of infants and children who are at risk for lead poisoning, in order to allow for medical interdiction and elimination of lead exposure sources in order to avoid permanent damage to their health and quality of life.
cc: Representative Meeks