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Individual states can utilize taxpayer dollars and allocate funds from their annual general fund or other operating budgets for lead hazard remediation. These funds can either work in isolation or supplement HUD OLHCHH funding for lead grants at the state or local level.
State and local investment in lead poisoning prevention is often leveraged with federal grants or allocation, and sometimes with philanthropic investment, to provide a flexible source of lead remediation funds. State of local lead grant funds are important to develop in order to scale up to meet the need for lead hazard remediation financial assistance, to reduce dependence exclusively on HUD lead grant funding and to assist smaller jurisdictions that may not be able have the capacity or target population size to apply for HUD lead funding directly. Funding requests for lead hazard reduction program funding should be supported by local EBL data, housing needs data (including Consolidated Plan indicators) and where possible, benefit/cost data related to lead poisoning’s impact on special education costs, juvenile justice expenses and other services related to services for children with EBL, including environmental investigation, medical case management and housing and health code enforcement.
An example of general funds support is the State of New Jersey. Beginning in 2017, the State of New Jersey allocated $10 million annually for a lead remediation/lead abatement pilot project, administered through the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs. New Jersey has also invested an additional $10 million in the annual budget for lead public health case management. A few other states have also allocated state funds for lead inspection, lead case management and/or lead remediation including the State of Maine ($4 million), Michigan ($1.75 million annually), and Maryland ($1.0 million annually).
The Illinois Comprehensive Lead Education, Reduction, and Window Replacement (CLEAR-WIN) Program Act presents another example of a dedicated state fund for lead remediation. In August of 2007, the state of Illinois passed the CLEAR-WIN legislation and the corresponding $5 million appropriations, designed to help low-income properties address lead hazards through window replacement.1 The CLEAR-WIN program was piloted in the City and County of Peoria and the Englewood and West Englewood neighborhoods on the south side of Chicago.2
A 2014 report highlighted the results of the pilot. The average cost of remediation per building and per housing unit was $9,108 and $7,407, respectively.3 Of the overall total program costs, about 40% was spent on lead free replacement window purchases, while 49% was spent on contractor expenses.4 The main purpose of the CLEAR-WIN program was to assist property owners, of both single- and multi-family, of buildings built prior to 1978 to replace windows that had the potential to be lead hazards. As such, the funds generated by the CLEAR-WIN program did not support lead remediation in other parts of the home.5 However, in Peoria, CLEAR-WIN funds were braided with HUD lead hazard reduction funds, so properties could receive a full lead risk assessment, replace hazardous windows, and remediate other lead-based paint hazards.