Reality television has become an American addiction, as viewers get an inside look at the lives of ordinary people who quickly become as famous as A-list entertainers. The shows are (supposedly) unscripted, which means anything can happen at any time for drama that turns into TV gold. Network producers also take a risk bringing these people on air, as real people make mistakes like the rest of us, and without proper background research, things can get really messy, really fast. (Think anti-gay remarks, anti-Islam slurs, and canceled TV shows.) Here are the scandals that rocked HGTV network.
Fixer Upper Couple Fined by EPA for $40,000 + $160,000 in Labor
Chip and Joanna Gaines’ TV series Fixer Upper focuses on their company Magnolia Homes renovating old houses around Waco, Texas. Some of the houses they work on are decades old, and many are built before 1978 when lead-based paint was banned from being used on homes.
The Environmental Protection Agency investigated Magnolia Homes’ handling of lead-based paint after a few episodes that aired raised questions over whether the Gaines were properly getting rid of the toxic paint. The EPA found 33 properties that Magnolia Homes worked on to be in violation. The couple is paying a $40,000 fine and completing $160,000 of lead abatement work to resolve the issue.