Mayor Bill de Blasio

Photo by Anthony Behar/Sipa US

Mayor de Blasio kicks off NYCHA's lead paint testing program

April 15, 2019 - 12:57 pm

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- Mayor de Blasio announced NYCHA's new lead-based paint testing program on Monday.

For the first time ever, 135,000 apartments will be tested with portable X-ray fluorescence analyzers.

This plan, which exceeds local and federal requirements, will detect the presence of lead paint and diminish any hazards found the units which were built before 1978, when lead paint was banned federally.

Part of Mayor’s LeadFree NYC Plan will focus its efforts to eliminate childhood lead exposure.

“New York City has driven down the number of kids exposed to lead by 90 percent, and now we will finish the mission,” said Mayor de Blasio. "This aggressive new testing plan will help make New York the healthiest and fairest big city in America.”

NYCHA will prioritize the developments that house the highest population of children under the age of six, which is the age recognized in the City’s law that requires landlords to conduct lead-based paint visual assessments regularly.

“Today, we begin to aggressively tackle lead-based paint inspections for our residents and their children,” said NYCHA Interim Chair and CEO Kathryn Garcia. “We will continue to accelerate lead testing to ensure NYCHA is lead free and our residents are safe from lead-based hazards in their homes.”

According to the plan, testing will begin at Harlem River Houses on April 15 and then continue to test seven other developments starting May 1. 

The remaining developments will be announced in the coming months and once tested, NYCHA will report its testing results online and plans to update information every two weeks.

Testing is set to be completed by the end of 2020.

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