Jackson gets $2.9 million grant to remove lead paint from homes

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JACKSON, Mich. (WLNS) — It could be lurking on your walls or in your pipes.

The city of Jackson announced Wednesday that it has received millions of dollars to help remove lead from homes in the city.

Lead in tap water has received lots of attention lately.

But it’s also a danger that can be found all over your house inside and out.

“We want to abate all lead paint that we can in homes where we find it,” said City of Jackson Public Information Officer Will Forgrave.

The city of Jackson just received a $2.9 million grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to remove lead paint from homes.

“The county health department is going to be forwarding us any children that test high for lead, and inspectors will be looking for lead-based paint,” Forgrave said.

Forgrave says after homes are identified, professional crews will be called in to safely remove lead paint.

Landlords can also apply to get funds to remove lead from their rentals.

“We estimate that about 150 homes will be abated with the $2.9 million,” Forgrave said.

The Jackson County Health Department admits lead poisoning is a big problem in the city.

In fact, a recent report says Jackson has the second highest lead poisoning rate for children in Michigan at 10.7 percent.

“Jackson’s housing stock, compared with other communities in the state, is older. With older houses comes more lead paint. And that’s where we believe a lot of these issues are coming from,” Forgrave said.

Jackson County’s health officer says children may be eating lead paint chips thinking they’re candy.

But just living in a home where lead paint is present can be toxic and lead to a lifetime of health problems.

The city hopes this grant can change lives.

“Any bit that we can do to help that, we’re going to strive to do,” Forgrave said.

The city plans to start working on homes later this summer.

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