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Health department modifies lead-safe law certification date

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    Shannon Lands, health department public information officer

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    A sign posted by the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department covers the door at 530 Acklin Avenue warns people to stay out due to the home being a lead hazard.

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Toledo landlords who comply with the city’s “lead-safe” law by having their properties inspected and registered will have their certifications dated beginning June 30, 2018, the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department said Monday.

Shannon Lands, health department spokesman, said owners of “zone 1” properties that complete the requirements will get the certification starting date for their six or three-year certifications beginning next year.

“All lead safe certifications already issued will be adjusted accordingly,” a statement from Ms. Lands said.

The adjustment was made to encourage owners to get a lead safe certification promptly rather than waiting until next June — the month they would be required under the law to be certified and registered, said Dave Welch, the health department’s environmental health director.

The health department in June sent Toledo landlords who are required to have their rental properties certified “lead-safe” by the city’s first deadline of June 30, 2018, a letter notifying them of their obligations.

 

RELATED: Toledo receives $2.9 for lead ■ Special report: Toledo tries to mimic Rochester’s success

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Shannon Lands, health department public information officer

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About 13,000 properties are estimated to fall in the first of the three deadlines Toledo City Council set when it amended the lead law in April. Subsequent property owners will have to complete inspections by June 30, 2019 or June 30, 2020. There are 17,000 homes in the second zone and 5,000 in the third, Ms. Lands said. 

The city’s law requires rental properties built before 1978 with one to four units be inspected and certified lead safe before leasing to tenants. City council amended the law, which initially required all affected properties to be registered by September, 2017, and created a three-tiered compliance schedule based on census tracts determined to be at highest risk.

A map of census tracts and their corresponding deadlines is available at lucascountyhealth.com/​environmentalhealth/​toledo-lead-ordinance.

Additionally, information about the law and lead poisoning risks for children was sent to Toledo water customers.

To date, 364 properties have completed the registration, according the the health department, Ms. Lands said.

Toledo Councilman Peter Ujvagi, chairman of the council committee overseeing the lead law implementation, lauded the health department’s decision to date certifications June 30, 2018.

“Our primary goal is to get as many homes tested as possible,” Mr. Ujvagi said. “The reality is we cannot get them tested all in one month, so this is a good policy decision made by the health department and it will increase the number of investors [and] owners who will get their buildings inspected earlier rather later.”

Mr. Ujvagi said more buildings should be inspected by now.

“Of course, I would like it to be much higher but the reality is we will have to build momentum,” he said. “There are people who think the law will change. That is not going to happen, ... but we need to be as reasonable as possible with folks.”

Contact Ignazio Messina at imessina@theblade.com419-724-6171 or on Twitter @IgnazioMessina.

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