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Harrison Lead Paint Inspections Target One & Two-Family Homes

Jul 06, 2024
Harrison NJ Lead Inspection

The Harrison Mayor & Council have appointed LEW Environmental Services Company as the designated firm to conduct lead paint inspections in town. LEW is not the only lead inspection company that can conduct and certify a property passed a lead inspection but the designation provides residents with the name of an experienced inspection company. The lead inspections will have the biggest impact on one and two-family homes in Harrison NJ. Many other properties are exempt from the necessity of lead inspections because they are periodically inspected by the Department of Community Affairs, Division of Codes & Standards,  Bureau of Housing Inspection.

Inspection Fees and Details

The inspections come with a fee of $270 per apartment, with $250 allocated for the inspection company and $20 designated for the State of New Jersey. There will likely be New Jersey Sales Tax in addition.

Focus on One and Two-Family Homes

In Harrison, the new lead paint inspection requirement will impact only one and two-family homes. This mandate is part of the broader initiative under the New Jersey Administrative Code (N.J.A.C. 5:28A-1.3), which focuses on identifying and addressing lead-based paint hazards in rental properties. While the regulation generally applies to all rental single-family, two-family, and multiple-dwelling units, certain exemptions reduce the scope in Harrison to primarily one and two-family homes.

Exemptions from Lead Paint Inspections

The following rental properties are exempt from the lead paint inspection requirements:

  1. Properties Constructed During or After 1978: These properties are exempt because lead-based paint was banned in 1978.
  2. Seasonal Rental Units: Single-family and two-family seasonal rental units rented for less than six months each year, without consecutive lease renewals, are exempt.
  3. Certified Lead-Free Properties: Units that have been certified as free of lead-based paint according to N.J.A.C. 5:17 are not subject to inspection.
  4. Registered Multiple Dwellings: Multiple rental dwelling units constructed before 1978, registered with the Department of Community Affairs for at least 10 years, and with no outstanding paint violations from the latest cyclical inspection, are exempt. This includes units with a current certificate of inspection from the Department of Community Affairs, Bureau of Housing Inspection, and those with open inspections but no paint violations.
  5. Dwellings with Valid Lead-Safe Certification: Properties with a lead-safe certification, valid for two years as per N.J.A.C. 5:28A-2.4, are exempt from periodic inspections.
  6. Owner Occupied Homes. If you do not rent your own one or two-family home, you are exempted as well. Three family owner-occupied buildings are already inspected for lead as part of the Department of Community Affairs, Bureau of Housing inspections and are exempt per terms of item #4 above.

Compliance and Penalties

Harrison property owners are required to schedule and complete visual inspections for lead hazards by Monday, July 22, 2024. Failure to comply with this deadline will result in significant penalties, with fines reaching up to $1,000 per week. This large fine may have to be applied with a lot of discretion taking into account that the Mayor & Council only hired LEW Environmental at the Special Zoom Mayor & Council meeting on Monday, July 1, 2024, only 21 days (3 weeks) from the compliance deadline. The July 1st Mayor & Council meeting ran into its own compliance issue with not having the “Raise Your Hand” feature activated, video off, audio muted and Chat disabled on the Zoom video conference for their meeting. In effect, it canceled the Public Session at the meeting. Read our article Harrison Residents Locked Out of Public Session At High Noon Meeting for more information.

For more information on the inspection requirements and exemptions, residents can refer to the New Jersey Administrative Code (N.J.A.C. 5:28A-1.3) or contact the Harrison Building Department and/or LEW Environmental Services Company through their website.

The above information is not legal advice and although the information is accurate you should consult with the Harrison Building Department and or your attorney to ensure that you comply with the law.

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