Special to the Reformer

BRATTLEBORO >> Vermont property owner Robert Immler of Brattleboro settled claims that he filed false lead paint compliance documents for his two rental properties in violation of Vermont consumer protection and lead laws.

"Lead paint is an avoidable hazard. Vermont landlords will be vigorously prosecuted for avoiding their lead paint obligations, or worse, lying about them," said Attorney General William Sorrell.

Every landlord with pre-1978 rental properties is required to submit annual compliance statements which show that the landlords have performed the essential maintenance practices (known as EMPs) and the properties are in compliance with the lead law.

The Department of Health inspected Immler's two Brattleboro properties — at 118 High Street and 651 Upper Dummerston Road — and found they were not in compliance, contrary to certified statements that Immler filed with the Department of Health.

Under the terms of the settlement, Immler will pay a penalty of $20,000 — $10,000 in payments to the state and $10,000 to be paid into the properties for permanent lead abatement improvements.

For information concerning the Vermont lead law, including the duties of property owners, and for copies of court documents from recent enforcement actions involving lead, visit www.ago.vermont.gov and click on "Lead."