Pay up! Fixer Upper stars Chip Gaines and Joanna Gaines' company, Magnolia House, was fined $40,000 by the US Environmental Protection Agency after they broke several rules about the proper removal of lead-based paint on the show. The EPA looked at footage from different seasons and deemed the couple's practices unsafe.
According to a statement found on the EPA's website, 33 homes were affected. "Video footage of Magnolia's renovations of older homes appearing in several seasons of Fixer Upper reviewed by EPA did not depict lead-safe work practices," the statement explained. And, according to the document, there were a number of different guidelines that the Gaines' company did not follow.
They didn't obtain a certification from the EPA before performing renovations, they didn't provide the home owners with pamphlets about the dangers of lead-based paints, and they didn't put up signs defining the work area — just to name a few.
Thankfully, Chip, Joanna, and the entire Magnolia House organization fully cooperated with the EPA. Not only did they agree to pay the fine, but they also demonstrated how to correctly remove lead paint during a Fixer Upper episode that aired in March. The famous couple has also vowed to donate $160,000 to a lead-based paint program in their hometown of Waco, TX.
A rep from the Magnolia House organization told People, "The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) filed a complaint alleging that Magnolia Homes did not comply with all of the requirements of the RRP (Renovation, Repair and Painting) Rule. Shortly after being first contacted by the EPA three years ago, Magnolia Homes took immediate steps to bring its activities into compliance with [the Toxic Substances Control Act]."
The statement added, "We continue to be proactive with our efforts to ensure total compliance moving forward, and remain committed to raising awareness in our community and our industry." While things seem to be settling down, Chip and Joanna have yet to speak out about the issue.