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September, 2015

A Little Lead-u-cation

Lead remains a major environmental concern in the United States. Many of our customers at Absolute Resource Associates are surprised to learn that lead can be found in many places, such as dust, soil, paint, and even air and drinking water. Homes and buildings built before 1978 have a very high likelihood of having lead-based paint, and this is the most common source of lead poisoning in the United States. If you have concerns about lead, be sure to call a certified firm such as ARA to help you address the problem safely and effectively.


Did you know that there is a difference between a Lead Risk Assessment and a Lead Survey? Many clients call in asking about our lead services at ARA, and this is an important distinction we often have to explain. Here’s the difference:

  • A Lead Risk Assessment requires a license, and is specific for residential dwellings or commercial buildings with the intended use to house or accommodate children under the age of 6, (e.g., schools). You are essentially assessing the lead risk to children living or spending a significant amount of time in the space.
  • A Lead Survey is often part of a Hazard Material Survey for building demolition, and includes inspecting, sampling, and testing for lead based paint in occupied commercial and/or federal buildings, and also during the demolition of buildings (residential or otherwise).


Because of the licensing requirement, ARA cannot do a Lead Risk Assessment for a residential dwelling with children, unless it is being demolished or renovated for commercial use only.  It’s a little confusing, but its an important distinction. The two questions we ask our clients are:

  1. “Is it a residential building?” If yes, we cannot do the work if occupied with children because it is considered a Lead Risk Assessment. If it is a Commercial or Federal building without children, its considered a Lead Survey and we can do the work.
  2. We also ask, “What is the intended use of the building in the future?” If it is a residential building, but the intended future use is commercial space, or simply demolition, then ARA can conduct the necessary lead survey. But if children under the age of 6 will be living in or occupying the building, ie a daycare or a school, then ARA cannot conduct the Risk Assessment.


If you have questions, you can always give us a call and we’ll point you in the right direction. ARA offers lab analysis of lead samples, as well as Lead Surveys. Be safe and be informed. Consumers should only work with reputable companies. Renovation firms need to be Lead-Safe Certified, and property managers need to be aware of their responsibilities. FMI visit

NH Mold Bill SB 125 FAQ’s

As you may have heard recently, the NH Senate approved SB 125 this summer, which is a legislative bill for the state of NH relating to mold. Since ARA’s CEO, Guy Sylvester, was involved in drafting the bill language and is on the NH Mold Task Force, we’ve had a lot of questions and calls about what this all means to NH citizens and those in the mold industry. Here are some answers to your frequently asked questions:


When does the bill go into effect?

SB125 goes into effect January 1, 2016

What does the bill say?

SB125 mandates that persons providing residential mold assessment services in NH for mold contamination in residential dwellings be certified by a third party.

What mold related services will now require third party certification?

Conducting an inspection, investigation, or survey of a dwelling or other structure to provide information to the owner regarding presence, identification, or evaluation of mold; the development of a mold remediation specification or protocol; and/or the  Collection of (a) mold sample(s) for analysis will all require a third party certification.

How do I get certified?

Visit  to get your CMI (Certified Microbial Investigator) or CIE (Certified Indoor Environmentalist) certification.

How much does it cost to get certified?

Cost is $300, and it needs to be renewed every other year.

What if I don’t get certified? What’s the punishment?

If you are found guilty it’s a misdemeanor, not to mention the risk to your reputation.

Is any group exempt from this law?

Any entity hired for any work not specific to mold is exempt from this law.

How does this law help consumers?

Consumers will now know that 3rd party certificants in the mold industry have experience, training and are required to get continuing education points. Before this law existed, anyone anywhere could call themselves a mold professional, which sometimes led to unsafe and/or unethical behavior in the industry. The folks who unknowingly hired these untrained individuals often wasted money, time and had their health compromised, with no legal recourse. This law now ensures that when you hire someone to help you with a mold problem, you have the peace of mind to know they have the credentials to do the work properly and safely. If they do not, consumers now have the law on their side.


We hope this answers some of your questions about the new mold law for the state of NH. For more information you can visit the New Hampshire Board of Licensure and Certifications website:

Now THAT's a Company Outing!

Every summer, ARA owners Sue & Guy Sylvester treat their employees and their families to a fun weekend in the White Mountains! As you can see from these pics of this year's trip, there's always lots of hiking, swimming, grilling, playing, laughing and making fun memories! What an amazing way to show your staff how much they’re appreciated. Here’s to another great trip on the books, thanks Sue & Guy!! Looking forward to next year!



Nice long hike in the White Mtns, then a dip in the river to cool down!



Absolute Resource Associates has been named the Prime Contractor on an investigation into petroleum contamination at a US Military Station in Vermont. CEO Guy Sylvester is acting as Site Superintendent and Health & Safety Officer, and ARA's Cliff Chase will act as the on-site Field Chemist, using our portable GC/MS technology to make on the fly field determinations with respect to additional borings and sampling points. ARA will provide all of the laboratory analysis of samples taken at the site. This is a profile of just one of the exciting Federal projects we are working on this year, more updates to follow in our next newsletter. If you would like to discuss partnering with ARA on an upcoming project (yours or ours), please give us a call!


The Resource Rambler Newsletter is brought to you by your friends at Absolute Resource Associates. ©2015


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Absolute Resource Associates
124 Heritage Ave. Unit #16 Portsmouth, NH 03801

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