(Chicago, Ill. – Sep. 4, 2008) U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Region 5 has settled a complaint against Wesley Realty Group in Evanston, Ill., for allegedly failing to warn tenants of 11 apartment buildings that their homes may contain lead-based paint hazards. A $6,760 penalty must be paid and a window replacement project undertaken.
Wesley Realty Group manages target housing at
* 4351, 4353, 4355, and 4357 W. Diversey;
* 1337 W. Fargo;
* 5230 W. Harrison;
* 6832 and 6834 N. Ashland; and
* 2751 N. Kostner in Chicago.
The company also manages buildings at
* 1119 Washington in Evanston and
* 850 S. 17th Ave. in Maywood.
Wesley Realty Group must also remove and dispose of wood windows and replace them with new double-hung vinyl windows at 39 rental units at 821-823 Dobson St. and 2525 Eastwood Ave. in Evanston within 12 months. The company must pay at least $60,984 for replacement of the 392 windows under the oversight of a licensed lead-based paint inspector.
The Federal Lead-Based Paint Disclosure Rule requires that landlords and sellers of housing constructed prior to 1978 provide tenants and buyers with general and property-specific lead-hazard information and include a lease or contract clause to confirm that prospective tenants or buyers have received the lead warnings prior to signing the contract to lease or purchase.
Lead exposure can cause reduced IQ, learning disabilities, developmental delays, reduced height, poor hearing and a host of other health problems in young children.
Peeling lead paint is the most common source of lead exposure to children in the United States. About 75 percent of the nation’s housing built before 1978 contains lead-based paint. When properly managed, lead-based paint poses little risk. If paint is not maintained, however, even low levels of lead exposure can threaten occupants’ health, especially children and pregnant women.