Lead-Based Paint

Residential Buildings and Child-Occupied Facilities built before 1978 are typically regulated when any paint is disturbed.

Note: Renovation and demolition activities in all residential buildings with more than four dwelling units, or when more than one building is involved in the project and in all public and commercial buildings may be regulated by the Asbestos Regulations.

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History of Lead-Based Paint

Lead-based paint is paint containing more than 0.06% lead as a pigment. Lead is added to paint to speed up drying, increase durability, maintain a fresh appearance, and resist moisture that causes corrosion. It is one of the main health and environmental hazards associated with paint. Since 1978, paint with lead has been banned in the U.S. for domestic use, however lead-based paint may still be found in older properties painted prior to the introduction of such regulations.

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Dangers of Lead-Based Paint

Lead is toxic to many body organs and tissues including the heart, bones, kidneys, and reproductive and nervous systems. It interferes with the development of the nervous system and is therefore particularly toxic to children, causing potentially permanent learning and behavior disorders. An infant developing in the womb of a woman who has an elevated blood lead level, is also susceptible to lead poisoning. Symptoms are nonspecific and may be subtle, and someone with elevated lead levels may have no symptoms.

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Lead-Based Paint Regulations

The EPA began enforcing regulations for lead-based paint abatement in March of 2000 and for lead-based paint renovation, repair and painting in April of 2010. MDEQ was authorized to enforce these same regulations within the State of Mississippi in January of 2003 and March of 2010 respectively. The regulations require individuals to be trained and certified before they can offer to perform any lead-based paint activities as defined in the regulations. The regulations also require that information concerning the hazards of lead exposure be provided to the residents and property owners with this pamphlet. The regulations also require that MDEQ is notified before any activity occurs. Although violations of the Lead-Based Paint regulations can result in penalties, the greatest concern is the prevention of unnecessary lead exposure.

EPA Regulations.

Regulated Activities

When regulated activities are to occur, a Lead-Based Paint Project Notification must be submitted six (6) working days prior to the start of the regulated activities.

Any activity that disturbs painted surfaces in residential structures and child-occupied facilities built before 1978 is subject to the regulations. These activities include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Testing paint for the presence of lead
  • Sanding
  • Scraping
  • Window replacement
  • Removal of architectural features (e.g., fireplace mantle, interior and exterior trim, stair rails and banisters, etc.)

Activities prohibited by the regulations include:

  • High speed abrasive removal of paint (e.g., use of grinders, needle guns, sand blasting, etc.)
  • Open flame burning or torching to remove paint
  • Use of heat guns that exceed 1100 degrees Fahrenheit
What is required to become Lead-Safe Certified
Required Training & Certification

To become lead-safe certified for abatement activities where individuals conduct work as a Lead Inspector, Lead Risk Assessor, Lead Supervisor, Lead Worker or Lead Project Designer, the individual must attend training for the activity that is to be performed. The training must be conducted by an EPA or MDEQ Accredited Training Provider.

To become lead-safe certified for renovation activities where individuals conduct work as a Lead Renovator or a Lead Dust Sampling Technician, the individual must attend training for the activity that is to be done. The training must be conducted by an EPA or MDEQ Accredited Training Provider.

All Lead training is valid for three (3) years after which refresher training must be completed.

MDEQ Certification

A list of individuals and firms that are certified to conduct lead-based paint activities in the State of Mississippi is available HERE.

Once the individual completes the required training, an application for certification must be completed and submitted to MDEQ for certification. An application for certification must also be completed and submitted for the firm (company) that employs the individual.

MDEQ Lead-Based Paint Fee Schedule.

The MDEQ Certification is valid for one (1) year and must be re-applied for each year.

The application of an abatement worker has been consolidated with the application of an individual.

What is required to become an Accredited Training Provider

Mississippi Regulations for Lead-Based Paint Activities require that before anyone can become an Accredited Training Provider, they must first meet the requirements of the EPA Regulations. An application with all accompanying documentation and fees must be submitted to MDEQ for review.  This accreditation is valid for four (4) years, but must be renewed each year.

All Lead training is valid for three (3) years after which refresher training must be completed.

Additional forms required for accredited training providers include:

Common Questions Concerning the Lead-Based Paint Regulations
Other Links

Mississippi State Department of Health – Environmental Lead Program
EPA – National Lead Information Center (NLIC)
U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development – HUD-Office of Healthy Homes and Lead Hazard Control
Consumer Product Safety Commission – “What You Should Know About Lead-Based Paint In Your Home”

Lead Based Paint Resource Links


For more information on Lead-Based paint contact: