Lead paint - house graphic

WASHINGTON — Federal money is on its way to Reading to help mitigate lead hazards in dozens of the city's homes.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has awarded the city a $3.3-million grant from its lead-based paint hazard reduction program.

The goal, officials said, is to maximize the number of children under the age of 6 who are protected from lead poisoning.

"With more than 65% of the city's homes having been built before 1948, lead abatement and renovation are critically important to the health of our community," said Mayor Eddie Morán. "These targeted investments will make homes safer and more livable, especially for our children, the next generation of residents."

The grant will be used to mitigate lead hazards in 150 units, specifically targeting the costs of electrical work, plumbing, painting preparation, carpentry, and window replacement, officials said.

"From day one of service to my community, my office has proudly written letters of support for individuals and groups pursuing federal grant funds," said U.S. Rep. Chrissy Houlahan, who represents the city. "I am thrilled that the city of Reading has been awarded more than $3 million by HUD to improve housing for our neighbors -- particularly those that are the most vulnerable among us."

Both the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Pediatrics provide an assortment of information about lead poisoning and prevention on their respective websites.

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