MAYOR BLOOMBERG SIGNS LEGISLATION TO ESTABLISH A BED BUG ADVISORY BOARD
Remarks by Mayor Bloomberg at a Public Hearing on Local Laws
“The third bill before me is Introductory Number 57-A, sponsored by Speaker Quinn and Council Members Brewer, Foster, Gentile, Gerson, Gonzalez, James, Mark-Viverito, Martinez, Mendez, Nelson, Palma, Sanders, Weprin, White, Koppell, Liu, Recchia, Sears, Vallone, Garodnick, Jackson, Avella, Arroyo, Dickens, Mealy, Lappin, Stewart, Rivera, and Gennaro. Introductory Number 57-A establishes a Bed Bug Advisory Board.
“Bed bugs are small insects that often hide in cracks in furniture, floors, or walls and are usually active at night. The physical impact to those living with bed bugs may start with painless bites which can later turn in to large, itchy welts. These bites are a great nuisance and can have a negative impact on the quality of life of New Yorkers.
“Bed bugs have resurfaced in New York City in recent years and we are not alone. Urban centers throughout the United States, Canada, and Europe are experiencing a resurgence in bed bugs. In response, we have instituted a multi-pronged approach to address the issue which includes: prevention through public education, creation of guidelines and protocols for residents, health care providers, businesses, and pest management professionals, and a systematic response to bed bug complaints.
“Despite all of our efforts, there is currently inadequate data to understand the full extent of the bed bug problem in the City. The creation of the Bed Bug Advisory Board, comprised of experts in the pest management, entomology, and public health fields and representatives from the Departments of Health and Mental Hygiene, Consumer Affairs, Sanitation, Information Technology and Telecommunications, and Housing Preservation and Development will examine the bed bug problem in further detail, systematically evaluate, study, identify and develop appropriate strategies to control and eradicate the bed bug problem in the City. The Advisory Board will report back their findings to the Mayor and the Speaker within nine months of their appointment.
“I would like to thank the commissioners and staff of the Departments of Health & Mental Hygiene, Consumer Affairs, Sanitation, Information, Technology & Telecommunications and Housing Preservation & Development for their work in this bill. I would also like to thank the Council for approving this legislation.”