Enforcement

Apartment Investment and Management Company (AIMCO) Civil Settlement

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) entered into the broadest lead disclosure settlement ever with one of the nation's largest property management firms, the Denver-based Apartment Investment and Management Co. (AIMCO). Residents living in more than 130,000 apartments in 47 states and Washington, DC, will live in lead-safe units as a result of this landmark settlement.

Overview

Today's settlement resolves Apartment Investment and Management Company's
(AIMCO) violations of the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992, Section 1018, at its pre-1978 properties in 47 states and the District of Columbia. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) are each responsible for enforcing Section 1018 of the Act.
Under the administrative settlement, AIMCO has agreed to take steps to ensure that all of its pre-1978 properties are safe from lead-based paint hazards. Specifically, AIMCO will inspect its pre-1978 properties for lead-based paint, followed up by complete risk assessments of all properties with lead-based paint. AIMCO will then remove all the lead-based paint hazards identified during the assessments. AIMCO also will provide training to its property manager about the requirements of Section 1018 and to its maintenance workers on safe work practices and lead-based paint. AIMCO also has agreed to pay a $129,580 civil penalty.

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Company Background

  • AIMCO, headquartered in Denver, Colorado, does business in 47 states and the District of Columbia.
  • AIMCO owns and manages more than 600 target housing properties with more than 117,000 units.

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Violations

  • In April 2000 AIMCO requested to audit for violations of Section 1018 under EPA's "Audit Policy" (Incentives for Self-Policing: Discovery, Disclosure, Correction and Prevention of Violations, 60 Fed. Reg. 66706 (Dec. 22, 1995), superseded by 65 Fed. Reg. 19617 (April 11, 2000)). The policy encourages regulated entities to voluntarily discover, correct and prevent violations of federal environmental requirements. Those who meet the terms of the Audit Policy may be eligible for the elimination or substantial reduction of the gravity-based penalties. Gravity based penalties are penalties assessed in accordance with the seriousness of a violation.
  • The government alleges that AIMCO violated Section 1018 requirements on 19 occasions.
  • AIMCO was not eligible for a 100 percent reduction of gravity-based penalties for all violations it disclosed under specific criteria that must be met under the Audit Policy.

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Terms of the Consent Agreement

  • Civil Penalty-$129,580.
  • Injunctive Relief-AIMCO will:
    • Perform lead-based paint inspections and risk assessments on all of its target housing properties;
    • Eliminate lead-based paint hazards identified in its target housing properties;
    • Perform ongoing maintenance on all its target housing properties that are not certified leadbased paint free; and
    • Provide training to all of its property managers and maintenance workers.

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Environmental and Health Benefits

  • Lead poisoning in children can cause IQ deficiencies, reading and learning disabilities, impaired hearing, reduced attention spans, hyperactivity and other behavior problems.
  • When properly maintained and managed, lead-based paint poses little risk.
  • The injunctive relief required by this settlement will ensure that AIMCO's properties will become free of lead-based paint hazards.

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Contact

For additional information contact:

Brian Dyer
U.S. EPA
Toxics and Pesticides Enforcement Division (2245A)
1200 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20460
(202) 564-4166
Brian Dyer (dyer.brian@epa.gov)

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