Chip and Joanna Gaines, stars of HGTV mega-hit Fixer Upper, are in trouble with the Environmental Protection Agency.
The EPA has accused the couple of mishandling lead-based paint, thereby violating federal regulations.
The Gaines’ company, Magnolia Homes, settled with the EPA this week, agreeing to pay a $40,000 civil penalty and spend an additional $160,000 toward lead abatement work in homes and child-occupied facilities in their hometown of Waco, Texas, where their home renovation show is set.
In announcing the settlement, the EPA said video footage from several seasons of Fixer Upper, which follows the Gaines as they renovate and style local homes, depicted the couple taking inadequate precautions to avoid lead exposure to both workers and residents. According to the allegations, the concerns relate to work on 33 homes erected before 1978 that are more likely to have used lead-based paint.
As part of its settlement with the EPA, Magnolia has agreed to adopt new record-keeping processes. The company is also required to release a video in which Chip Gaines discusses lead paint and the importance of complying with federal regulation.
Lead inhalation can cause damage to the kidney and nervous system, particularly in children.