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Reg. VI 19-60
Patricia Campbell, (817) 681-9741
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FOR RELEASE
Thursday
August 29, 2019

HUD AWARDS $1 MILLION TO HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF GALLUP TO TEST AND REDUCE LEAD HAZARDS


ALBUQUERQUE - At a press event held today in Gallup, New Mexico, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded a $1,000,000 grant to the Housing Authority of the City of Gallup to identify and reduce lead-based paint hazards in its public housing. Nationally, HUD awarded a total of $27.8 million to 38 Public Housing Agencies (PHAs) in 25 states under its Public Housing Capital Fund to target approximately 2,800 public housing units across the nation, most currently occupied by families with young children.

"We have no higher calling than to make certain the public housing that taxpayers support is healthy for families to live in," said HUD Albuquerque Field Office Director Lawrence Reyes, who spoke at the event. "Today in Gallup, we are making a critical investment in the futures of young children growing up in public housing."

"Our mission at the Gallup Housing Authority is to provide safe, decent and affordable housing for low-income families," said Housing Authority Executive Director Richard Kontz. "We are committed to eliminating all environmental hazards, including lead, from our houses and properties, and today's grant from HUD will help us accomplish this objective."

Lead-contaminated dust is the primary cause of lead exposure and can lead to health problems in young children, including reduced IQ, learning disabilities, developmental delays, reduced height, and impaired hearing. At higher levels, it can be deadly.

Although lead-based paint was banned for residential use in 1978, HUD estimates that about 24 million older homes still have significant lead-based paint hazards today. However, homes receiving rental assistance, including public housing, tend to have a lower prevalence of lead-based paint hazards compared to private housing. While most public housing has already undergone abatement, there are still some properties where lead-based paint remains and hazards have redeveloped.

HUD has a long history of working to ensure lead-safe housing, which fits into the broader federal response to address lead hazards found in paint, dust and soil, and other sources like water and consumer goods. For 25 years, HUD's Office of Lead Hazard Control and Healthy Homes has worked to improve methods to identify and address home-related health and safety hazards, including those from lead. Since 1993, HUD has awarded more than $2 billion in grants to communities for identification and control of lead-based paint hazards in over 200,000 low-income privately owned housing units. In addition, HUD supports research on best practices for identifying and controlling lead-based paint hazards and conducts an outreach program to get out the message.

[From left to right – 1) Tiffany Saucedo; 2) Pearl Reed; 3) Selina Paradise; 4) Executive Richard Kontz 5) Stephany Skeets; 6) Evangeline Benally; 7) Michael Burnside, and; 8) Telisia Montano]
From left to right – 1) April Hustito; 2) Pearl Reed; 3) Selina Paradise; 4) Executive Richard Kontz 5) Stephany Skeets; 6) Evangeline Benally; 7) Michael Burnside, and; 8) Telisia Montano
[Left to Right – 1) Michael Burnside; 2) Executive Director Richard Kontz, and FOD Lawrence Reyes]
Left to Right – 1) Michael Burnside; 2) Executive Director Richard Kontz, and FOD Lawrence Reyes
[Left to Right – 1) Alfred Abeita, Sr.; 2) PIH Director Floyd Duran; 3) Richard Kontz; 4) Jackie McKinney; 5) FOD Lawrence Reyes]
Left to Right – 1) Alfred Abeita, Sr.; 2) PIH Director Floyd Duran; 3) Richard Kontz; 4) Jackie McKinney; 5) FOD Lawrence Reyes
[Housing Authority Residents]
Housing Authority Residents

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HUD's mission is to create strong, sustainable, inclusive communities and quality affordable homes for all.
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