Note: Intro 57A-2006, the original bed bug task force bill, has been passed in the New York City Council. The final bill establishes a bed bug advisory board for the city. The Mayor signed the bill on Wednesday, March 18. See Local Law 14 (PDF). And the board finally has been convened.
A bill was introduced in the New York City Council on November 19, 2008 that would require the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to:
- create a bed bug control training program for:
- pest control providers, and
- property owners;
- make available bed bug information on its website; and
- establish a bed bug toll-free hotline for the public to report bed bug infestations and request bed bug control information.
- 12/6/08: The New York City Council tries again: a new bed bug bill
- 12/8/08: NYC’s new bed bug bill
- 12/9/08: Peter Vallone, Jr. joined the sponsors
- 12/10/08: Letter to Chair and Members of the Health Committee – December 10
- 12/18/08: Thomas White, Jr. added as sponsor
- 1/1/09: A New Year, will this be the year?
- 1/4/09: WNYC Radio runs short news item about Intro 873, Bedbug Victims Hope City Will Take Action in 2009; see our post here (our sound bite is lost to history, however)
- 1/9/09: Jessica Lappin added as sponsor; NYC Council Intro 873 now has 17 sponsors
- 1/14/09: The New York Times editorial, Getting the Bed Bugs Out, calls on New York elected officials to
press for better training and more rigorous certification of exterminators, more public education about these pests, tougher standards for used furniture and a task force to figure out how to stay ahead of an army that seems to be growing every year.
- 1/27/09: Letter to the Speaker of the New York City Council outlining a policy framework to control the spread of bed bugs in New York City
- 2/4/09: Intro 873 is slightly amended, see text of Int. 873-A below
- 2/5/09: A New York City Council hearing is to be held on February 24, on three bed bug bills:
- 2/6/09: Tony Avella signed on as sponsor of Int. 57 and Int. 873
- 2/6/09: Village Voice: Brewer Stomps Bedbugs
- 2/8/09: Maria del Carmen Arroyo signed on as sponsor of all three bills
- 2/17/09: New York Daily News: New York bedbug complaints increase 34% in a year
- 2/19/09: James Vacca signs on as sponsor of Intro 873
- 2/20/09: Gale Brewer’s press release and press conference announcement, Council Hears Brewer’s Bills to Weaken Bed Bugs’ Bite:
“It’s great that we’re not smoking as much, and great that we’re not eating trans fats, but we need to focus on bed bugs in the same aggressive manner.”
- 2/24/09: A public hearing was held on Intros 57-2006, 872-2008, and 873-A-2008
- 2/24/09: Gotham Gazette: Crawling to a Hearing
- 2/25/09: am New York: City trying to get handle on resurgent bed bugs, and see The am New York cover for the front cover
- 2/25/09: Daily News: City backs battle against bedbugs
- 2/25/09: Village Voice Runnin’ Scared: Bedbugs Bills Heard by Council, DDT Myth Spread
- 3/2/09: Jessica Lappin added as sponsor of Intros 57 and 872
- 3/2/09: Inez Dickens added as sponsor of Intros 57 and 872
- 3/2/09: Darlene Mealy added as sponsor of Intro 57
- 3/2/09: Vincent Gentile added as sponsor of Intros 873 and 872
- 3/6/09: Council Member Gale Brewer announced the amendment of Intro 57 and scheduled NYC Council vote on March 11, 2009. The Mayor, it is hoped, will sign the legislation. Our post and the text of the announcement: A bed bug advisory board for New York City
- 3/11/09: The New York City Council passed Int. 57A-2006.
- 3/11/09: The New York City Council press release: New York City Council to Bed Bugs: Drop Dead!
- 3/13/09: The Mayor will sign the bed bug advisory bill on Wednesday, March 18
- 3/18/09: New York City has a bed bug advisory board law. Read the text of the legislation here. And the Mayor’s signing statement. See Local Law 14 (PDF).
- Find your NYC council member here
- A sample letter: a great letter in support of Intro 873, courtesy of Unlucky in Bugs
- Our suggested sample letter that cites the New York Times editorial and requests a comprehensive bed bug control plan for our city and support for introduced legislation (this bill plus the 2006 bed bug task force bill and a new mattress and furniture disposal bill)
- A sample letter to City Council Speaker Christine Quinn requesting her leadership on the broader policy objectives: Stepping up our campaign: a sample letter to the Speaker of the City Council
When writing an email to your New York City Council representative, please copy Speaker Christine Quinn at email@example.com and Ms. Rosalba Rodriguez, Director of the District Office of Council Member Gale Brewer, at firstname.lastname@example.org
Int. No. 873-A
By Council Members Brewer, Barron, Comrie, Dickens, Eugene, Felder, Gerson, Gonzalez, James, Koppell, Liu, Nelson, Sears, Weprin, Vallone Jr., White Jr., Lappin, Avella, Arroyo and Vacca
A Local. Law to amend the administrative code of the city of New York, in relation to requiring the department of health and mental hygiene to establish a bed bug technique training program for pest control.
Be it enacted by the Council as follows:
Section 1. Chapter 1 of title 17 of the administrative code of the city of New York is amended by adding a new section 17-195 to read as follows:
§17-195 Bed bug techniques training program. a. The department shall establish a program to train exterminators in the proper techniques to eliminate bed bugs.
b. The department shall establish a program to train property owners in the proper techniques to eliminate bed bugs and to prevent the transfer and spread of any bed bug infestation.
c. Any training programs developed pursuant to this section shall include, but not be limited to, identification of bed bugs and understanding their life cycle, inspection procedures to identify infested areas and furnishings, techniques to prepare infested sites for containment and extermination, encasement methods, proper techniques for the moving and disposal of infested furnishings and materials and special considerations for multiple dwellings. Any training program should also provide instruction on which techniques and pesticides are inappropriate for bed bug elimination.
d. The department shall make available on its website information on bed bug awareness, infestation and control.
e. The department shall ensure that a toll-free hotline number, such as 311, shall be made available to the public for any person seeking to report an incidence of bed bug infestation or to request information on bed bugs.
f. A list of exterminators including the name and company of the exterminator trained pursuant to this section shall be made available to the public on the department’s website, upon request by calling 311 and upon request in person at department offices to be located in each of the five boroughs, as determined by the department.
§2. This local law shall take effect ninety days after its enactment, provided, however, that the department of health and mental hygiene shall take any necessary actions to implement this law, including the promulgation of rules, prior to such effective date.
The sponsors (21) – Int. 873
Gale A. Brewer – chief sponsor
Maria del Carmen Arroyo – 2/8/09
Tony Avella – 2/6/09
Leroy G. Comrie, Jr.
Vincent J. Gentile – 3/2/09
Alan J. Gerson
Sara M. Gonzalez
G. Oliver Koppell
Jessica S. Lappin – 1/9/09
John C. Liu
Michael C. Nelson
James Vacca – 2/19/09
Peter F. Vallone, Jr. – 12/9/08
David I. Weprin
Thomas White, Jr. – 12/18/08