An Evaluation of the City of Rochester's Lead Law: 2006-2008

Publication Date: November 2008

Publisher: Center for Governmental Research Inc.

Author(s): Rochelle Ruffer; Sarah Boyce; Maria Ayoob

Research Area: Government; Social conditions

Keywords: Government Management; Health; Human Services

Type: Report

Coverage: New York


Rochester NY is the first U.S. city to have a housing inspection law that incorporates both visual inspections and dust wipes for rental units located in areas at high risk for lead paint problems. CGR conducted a 2-year study, funded by the Greater Rochester Health Foundation, of the impact of the law from July 2006 - July 2008. CGR found nearly 3,440 housing units have been or will be made lead safe because of the law, but nearly a third of the units with interior lead hazards would have been missed without dust wipe testing. The odds that a child with an elevated blood lead level lived in rental housing in the city decreased sharply in the 2 years after the law went into effect. The cost of compliance by landlords was lower than expected.