Bloomington receives federal funding to tackle hazardous lead-based paint issues

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BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WMBD) – The city of Bloomington is the recipient of a federal grant meant to improve the health of children and families.

On Wednesday, Congressman Darin LaHood (R-IL) joined Joseph P. Galvan, HUD Midwest Regional Administrator, and Bloomington Mayor Tari Renner to present the city with a $2.34 million dollar check. The money, coming from the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Grant Program. LaHood said the award is the first step on a mission to completely remove lead paint from the community.

Mayor Renner says lead based paint is a continuing issues for homes in Bloomington West and Central regions, and its only getting worse.

“There was a couple that came up to me in a West Bloomington neighborhood,” said Renner. “They were really upset, and they told me that their 2-year-old daughter tested 30 for lead poisoning, and 5 is considered to be a danger.”

Renner says on behalf of the city he’s grateful to be receiving the funds as they will be used in an effort to minimize, and eventually eradicate, the issue.

“With this money, the city is going to address over 92 housing units, providing safer homes for low and very low income families with children,” said Galvan.

“Residences, or older neighborhoods, in Central and West bloomington will be able to have their lead paint abated,” said Renner.

Congressman LaHood (R-IL) explained the money will not be able help every house that may need it, but the city always has the option of reapplying for additional grants. 

“It’s unfortunate that we still have to deal with lead paint,” he said. “But the 93 properties, and homes, that are going to be affected, are going to be so much better when this is done.”

Bloomington is the only city in Illinois receiving federal funds from HUD through the Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Grant Program.

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