Third Phase of NH’s Recent Changes to State’s Lead Laws: Effective July 1, 2021

The signing of NH Senate Bill (SB) 247 by Governor Sununu on February 9, 2018, represented a major step forward in protecting New Hampshire children from lead poisoning.  This legislation brought a number of changes including requiring Universal blood lead level testing of all 1 year olds and 2 year olds, and testing of water in child care facilities and school building.

The third phase of the law went into effect Thursday, July 1, 2021, lowering further the threshold at which a child’s blood lead level triggers intervention by NH Division of Public Health Services, Healthy Homes and Lead Poisoning Prevention Program – from 7.5 micrograms per deciliter of blood (mcg/dL) to 5.0 mcg/dL.  This lower public health action level aims to protect more New Hampshire children from lead poisoning.

The new public health action level of 5 mcg/dL, is the blood lead level that prompts professional lead inspections, home visits by the Division of Public Health Services’ public health nurses, and more health resources for families, including nurse case management, parent education, identification of lead hazards in the child’s environment, and referrals to developmental services.

In addition, this new lower public health action level requires landlords of any rental unit where a child resides with a blood lead elevation 5.0 mcg/dL or higher that resulted from exposure to lead hazards within the rental unit, to have a licensed lead abatement contractor remove the lead hazards within 90 days.