Fair Housing and the EPA Impose More Fines!
Break the Law and Break-Out Your Checkbook!
Landlord Pays $9,000 to Settle With HUD
Over Emotional Support Animal
By the Editors of the Rental Housing Association
SAN FRANCISCO – A landlord and agent who refused to rent to a tenant with disabilities because he had an emotional-support animal have settled with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) through a conciliation agreement, according to a release.
The case in San Francisco came to HUD’s attention when an individual with disabilities filed a complaint alleging that he was denied the opportunity to rent an apartment because he had an emotional-support animal.
HUD’s investigation found the landlord and agent were explicitly informed that the prospective tenant’s animal is prescribed by a doctor and allowed under fair housing laws, but they still refused to consider his tenancy because of the animal.
Under the terms of the agreement, the owner will pay the complainant $9,000 and both respondents will attend fair housing training, according to the release.
“Assistance animals provide persons with disabilities with the support they need to not only enjoy their home, but to function in life,” said Anna María Farías, Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, in the release. This “agreement reflects HUD’s ongoing commitment to ensuring that housing providers abide by our nation’s fair housing laws.”
The Fair Housing Act prohibits housing providers from denying housing to persons with disabilities and from refusing to make reasonable accommodations in policies or practices, which includes denying assistance-animal requests.
U.S. EPA Settles With Two Bay Area Firms Over Lead-Based Paint Hazards
SAN FRANCISCO—The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has settled with two Bay Area construction firms for violations of federal laws that protect workers and residents from lead paint exposure. [The two companies] located in San Francisco and Oakland will pay about $27,000 and $8,500 in penalties, respectively.
“Reducing childhood lead exposure and its health impacts is a top priority for EPA,” said EPA Pacific Southwest Regional Administrator Mike Stoker. “We will continue to diligently enforce our requirements to ensure children, workers, and residents are properly informed and protected.”
The Toxic Substances Control Act’s Renovation, Repair, and Painting rule and Pre-Renovation Education rule require contractors working in housing or child-occupied facilities built before 1978 to follow practices that minimize lead exposure and inform residents how to protect themselves from lead exposure. Local governments in California increasingly require residential seismic retrofit work to prevent harm from earthquakes. EPA inspects seismic retrofit companies that work in older apartment buildings and homes to ensure they comply with lead-based paint requirements.
EPA found both foundation repair companies failed to comply with occupant notification requirements in advance of the renovations and lacked required lead paint renovation certifications. EPA’s investigations also found both did not retain proper records such as those ensuring that a certified renovator performed on-the job training for workers and performed post-renovation cleaning verification.
Lead exposure can cause a range of negative health impacts and is particularly dangerous for young children, because their nervous systems are still developing. In 1978, the federal government banned consumer uses of lead-based paint; however, it is still present in millions of older homes, sometimes under layers of new paint.
Both the Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule and the Pre-Renovation Education Rule protect the public (especially children under the age of 6) from lead-based paint hazards associated with repair or remodeling activities in homes and child-occupied facilities built before 1978. The RRP rule requires individuals who perform renovations to be properly trained and certified and follow lead-safe work practices.
Learn about the Lead Renovation, Repair
and Painting Rule and Program
Learn About Certification and Training
Requirements For Renovation Firms:
[Editor’s Note: CALL AOA FOR THE NEXT SCHEDULED RRP CERTIFICATION CLASS!]