Mayor de Blasio lead testing

New York City Mayor's Office

De Blasio Kicks Off Lead-Based Paint Testing At 135,000 NYCHA Apartments

April 15, 2019 - 4:19 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880) -- The city is spending $88 million to test 135,000 New York City Housing Authority apartments for lead.

Seven firms hired by the city will use what are called portable X-ray fluorescence analyzers to test for lead at units that were built before 1978, when lead paint was banned at the federal level.

Mayor Bill de Blasio said nothing has ever been done on this scale before.

"The technology allows inspectors to see through all the layers of paint over the generations since the building was built and know once and for all if there is lead present," Mayor Bill de Blasio said. "It means we're going to be able to disqualify a number of apartments and say once and for all, we know they don't have lead and that means we can put all of our energy into the apartments that do have lead and fixing that situation."

"This is the definition of leaving no stone unturned. We're going to get the final, clear answer for each and every one of them," the mayor added. 

Temporary NYCHA Chair Kathryn Garcia said every apartment that tests positive for lead-based paint will be remediated.

The city projects all the lead testing at NYCHA will be finished by the end of next year.

"For the first time in NYCHA's history we will definitively know which apartments have lead and which do not," Garcia said.