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We audited the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) oversight of lead-based paint reporting and remediation in its public housing and Housing Choice Voucher programs.  The audit was part of the activities in our fiscal year 2017 annual audit plan.  The audit objective was to determine whether HUD had adequate oversight of lead‐based paint reporting and remediation in its public housing and Housing Choice Voucher programs.

HUD lacked adequate oversight of lead-based paint reporting and remediation in its public housing and Housing Choice Voucher programs.  Specifically, it did not (1) ensure that public housing agencies appropriately reported and mitigated cases involving children with environmental intervention blood lead levels (EIBLL) in its public housing program, (2) establish policies and procedures for public housing agencies to report a child with an EIBLL who resided in a household assisted under its Housing Choice Voucher program and ensure that identified lead hazards had been mitigated, and (3) ensure that public housing agencies completed required lead-based paint inspections.  In addition, for housing built after 1977, HUD did not require public housing agencies to report and mitigate cases involving children with EIBLLs residing in public or assisted housing.  As a result, HUD lacked assurance that public housing agencies properly identified and mitigated lead hazards, thus increasing the potential of exposing children to lead poisoning due to unsafe living conditions.

We recommend that the General Deputy Assistant Secretary for Public and Indian Housing to (1) update HUD’s regulations to expand the inspection and abatement requirements of 24 CFR Part 35 to housing completed after 1977 in cases in which a child with an elevated blood lead level is reported and (2) implement adequate procedures and controls to ensure that public housing agencies comply with the lead safe requirements.