An official website of the United States government.

This is not the current EPA website. To navigate to the current EPA website, please go to This website is historical material reflecting the EPA website as it existed on January 19, 2021. This website is no longer updated and links to external websites and some internal pages may not work. More information »


EPA’s Lead-based Paint Enforcement Helps Protect Children and Vulnerable Communities - 2020

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA or the Agency) today highlighted 89 federal enforcement actions completed over the last year to protect the public, especially young children, from exposure to lead in paint.  The cases highlighted in this summary involved alleged noncompliance with at least one of the following Agency’s lead-based paint requirements: the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule; the  TSCA Lead-based Paint Activities Rule; and the Lead Disclosure Rule (LDR) under Section 1018 of the Residential Lead-based Paint Hazard Reduction Act.  These requirements apply to most pre-1978 dwellings and to child-occupied facilities such as pre-schools and child-care centers.

The Agency uses an array of mechanisms to promote compliance and, thereby, reduce the risk of lead exposure.  Lead-based paint enforcement actions generally include administrative civil settlements and orders by EPA, and civil judicial settlements and criminal prosecutions by the U.S. Department of Justice.  Cases often result from referrals, tips and complaints from state or local authorities, consumers and others, including information related to children with elevated blood-lead levels. 

Enforcement actions are taken to achieve compliance resulting in reductions in lead exposure and environmental contamination.  Actions to enforce EPA’s lead-based paint rules result in the reduction of human exposure to lead paint, most importantly for vulnerable populations such as young children and pregnant women.  Lead-contaminated dust from chipped or peeling lead-based paint in homes built prior to 1978 is one of the most common causes of elevated blood lead levels in children.  Infants and children are especially vulnerable to lead paint exposure because their growing bodies absorb more lead than adults do, and their brains and nervous systems are more sensitive to the damaging effects of lead.  Infants and children can be exposed from multiple sources and may experience irreversible and lifelong health effects.  Lead dust can be generated when lead-based paint deteriorates or when it is disturbed, such as during a renovation or repair that does not utilize EPA’s lead-safe work practices.

On this page:

Selected Highlights

  • Muhammad Ashraf (PA) paid a penalty of $84,000 to settle alleged Lead Disclosure Rule (LDR) violations related to six residential lease agreements.  The alleged violations included failure to comply with LDR requirements to provide prospective tenants an EPA-approved lead hazard information pamphlet, a required Lead Warning Statement, and an appropriate statement disclosing knowledge of the presence of lead-based paint and/or lead-based paint hazards.  A city referred this case to EPA because a child with a high elevated blood-lead level resided in one of the rental properties.
  • Walter H. Clews (MD), owner and principal manager of American Homeowner Services (AHS), pleaded guilty to three TSCA criminal counts for causing his company’s staff to certify target housing as “lead-free,” when, in fact, the housing contained lead-based paint.  AHS is a lead-based paint abatement services operation.  The Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE), with EPA financial assistance, re-inspected more than 300 residences certified as lead-free by AHS and found that more than 100 of them contained lead-based paint. These inspections arose out of a complaint from a homeowner with young children who discovered that her property contained lead-based paint despite receiving a certification from AHS that it was lead-free.  MDE referred the matter to EPA’s Criminal Investigation Division, which found that one of AHS’s inspectors routinely failed to properly inspect target housing, and that Clews and a company manager instructed the company’s staff to generate and sign lead-free reports on behalf of the inspector. 
  • Growing Days, LLC (KS/MO), whose owner, Tamara Day, hosts HGTV’s Bargain Mansions television show, entered into a settlement to resolve alleged Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule violations depicted on the show.  After observing violations on the television show, EPA conducted on-site inspections and compliance monitoring activities.  The settlement was conditioned upon the company’s performance of several projects to promote broader awareness of and compliance with the RRP Rule. The projects included creation of an RRP instructional video, to be posted on the company’s website and blog, and linked to its social media platforms, thereby reaching a large audience of potential future home renovators. EPA also obtained settlements with the following contractors associated with the Bargain Mansions show: Homoly and Associates, Inc. (MO), Open Door Homes, Inc. (KS/MO); Next Generation Construction, LLC (KS); Remco Demolition, LLC (KS/MO); and KC Demo, Inc. (MO).   Collectively, the businesses associated with the Bargain Mansions show, including Growing Days LLC, paid $66,287 in penalties to settle alleged violations for improper renovations related to the show.
  • Collegiate Entrepreneurs, Inc. (MA), a home painting company, was sentenced after pleading guilty to one count of violating TSCA and one count of falsification of records.  The company performed jobs subject to TSCA’s RRP Rule.  The Rule required the company to ensure that certified renovators complied with training, supervision, lead-safe work practices, post-renovation cleaning, recordkeeping and other requirements.  In response to a federal grand jury subpoena, an employee produced records for 12 jobs, including records purportedly prepared and signed by certified renovators to document compliance.  However, records for at least 10 of the jobs were false; signatures had been forged and the records falsely represented that the jobs were compliant.  Collegiate Entrepreneurs was sentenced to pay a fine of $50,000; serve five years of probation; abstain from RRP Rule-regulated projects while on probation; and pay $30,000 in restitution to a victim homeowner. 
  • Aaron Wise (PA) was sentenced to two years of probation and ordered to pay $1,596 in restitution to four victims for falsely advertising himself as an EPA-certified lead trainer and making false statements to EPA.  Wise was charged with making false statements regarding his name and employment qualifications in written correspondence with EPA.  Wise gave a false name to EPA and misrepresented the nature of his background and training to make it appear that he was an accredited provider of EPA Lead Certification courses. 
  • Dennis Morgan (PA) was indicted by a federal grand jury on three counts of violating TSCA for alleged failure to comply with the Lead Disclosure Rule for property in Sunbury, Pa. The indictment charged that Morgan failed to fulfill disclosure and recordkeeping obligations.  The maximum penalty for each violation is one year of imprisonment, one year of supervised release, and a $100,000 fine.
  • Precision Consulting, Inc. and Wayne Gladney (NY) were found in contempt of court and subject to sanctions, starting at $100 per day, doubling daily up to $1000 per day, for violating the court’s preliminary injunction order for alleged lead-based paint violations.  Gladney is the company’s principal and owner.  The Federal District Court in the Eastern District of New York ruled that the defendants failed to comply with its civil preliminary injunction order. That order compelled the defendants to, among other things, abstain from lead-based paint renovations or abatements until they could demonstrate compliance, and to change the company’s website to accurately reflect its certifications and capabilities.  The case stems from EPA’s civil complaint which alleged that the defendants had repeatedly violated lead-based paint requirements when performing lead paint abatements and a renovation in metropolitan New York City.  The alleged violations included failure to comply with requirements to obtain EPA certification, assign a certified supervisor to oversee abatements, conduct post-abatement clearance procedures and ensure performance by a certified abatement worker.  

Top of Page

Additional Highlights

Civil Settlements/Orders

Actions $30,000 or More

Actions $20,000 or More

Actions $10,000 or More

Top of Page

Actions Less Than $10,000

Top of Page

Expedited Settlement Agreements

Expedited Settlement Agreements are a streamlined settlement approach that is used to address certain minor violations. They ensure that violators quickly come into compliance and assess a small penalty.

Top of Page

Settlements with Projects to Reduce Lead Exposure

Top of Page