Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Keep Your Georgia Lead-Safe Renovator Certification Current

Georgia environmental protection division for lead and asbestos regulation
Georgia requires renewal of the Lead-Safe Renovation Certification every three years. The state took over the EPA program in December 2010, meaning many contractors will be due for renewal this year.

On December 9, 2010, Georgia passed additional requirements for its contractors and painters in the state for compliance with the EPA's Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) Rule. Then in July, 2011, Georgia officially became an EPA Authorized state, with permission for its Environmental Protection Division (EPD) to administer and enforce the RRP Program in Georgia in lieu of the EPA.

Many contractors who were certified between December 2010 and July 2011 do not realize that they must comply with the Georgia renewal requirements, which state that renewal training must be completed every three years, rather than the EPA renewal requirements which are every five years. In addition to attending a refresher course, Certified Renovators must pay a $150 renewal fee, and the Certified Firm that they work for must also pay a $300 registration fee every three years.

Certified Renovators who fail to complete the Georgia refresher training within three years of their initial course must pay twice the normal renewal fee to receive a one year extension to complete the refresher training requirements. 

Refresher training can be completed at any time prior to the Certified Renovator's expiration date, so GreenEDU recommends registering early to make sure you avoid additional fees or any lapses in your certification. A full schedule of Georgia refresher courses is available at www.greenedu.com/lead-renovators-certification-refresher-courses?state=ga.

A Summary of Georgia's RRP Rule

Applicability
The Georgia RRP Rule applies to the following renovation, repair and painting (RRP) work: 
  • Renovations completed for compensation; 
  • In residential houses and apartments built before 1978; 
  • In child-occupied facilities such as schools and daycare centers built before 1978; 
  • When disturbing more than 6 square feet of lead painted or coated surfaces per interior room; or 
  • When disturbing more than 20 square feet of lead painted or coated surfaces on exteriors. 
  • When replacing windows of any size; or 
  • Partial demolitions of structures, walls, or components that are not entire structure demolitions. 
In addition to residential homes, these guidelines also apply to work performed on child-occupied facilities, such as schools or daycares.

Firm Certification
Renovation firms and contractors that wish to perform work that would fall under the RRP rule must be certified with the state of Georgia as of December 9, 2010. The certification fee for the firm is $300 for 3 years, or $125 if paid annually. Firms register by completing a Georgia Renovation Firm application, and they must employ a Certified Renovator who can supervise the firms renovation activities.

Certified Renovator Requirements
Certified Renovators must be trained and registered with the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (EPD) as of December 2010. The fee to register is $150 for three years. Before one can register, you must complete an 8-hour initial Lead Renovator Training course with an approved Georgia training provider.

Certified Renovators are required to renew their certification every three years from the date of their initial training, including Renovators who received EPA Certified training prior to December 2010 who wish to continue working in Georgia. A 4-hour refresher training course is required, along with the $150 registration fee to the state. Certified Renovators who do not attend the refresher training within three years of their initial course must pay two times the renewal fee ($300 total) and will then have one additional year to complete the refresher trainingIf renewal is not completed within the four years, individuals must retake the initial 8-hour Renovator training if they wish to continue performing lead-safe renovation work.

Clarification for EPA Certified Contractors
Technically the Georgia EPD will honor the EPA RRP Certification for five years for those contractors who were EPA certified prior to December 9, 2010. However, if an EPA certified contractor wishes to continue performing RRP work in Georgia, they must either renew their certification with the state within three years of their initial RRP training, or else at the end of the five years they would need to attend a Georgia 8-hour initial training course and re-register with the state at that time. For those opting to renew, Georgia EPD has announced that it will waive the additional fee for EPA certified contractors who missed the three year deadline if they attend refresher training within four years of their initial course.

Information on Georgia's RRP Rule provided by the Georgia Environmental Protection Division.