Rosenthal Announces Legislation to Alleviate Bedbug Burden

Bills would create bedbug tax credit and right to know for lease-signers
April 9, 2010

New York, NY – New York State Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal (D/WF, Manhattan) unveiled a two-bill legislative agenda intended to combat the growing epidemic of bedbugs in New York, which have caused tremendous anguish, anxiety and financial hardship for residents across the socio-economic spectrum.

“As the scourge of bedbugs continues in New York, I am committed to giving my constituents the tools to protect themselves both epidemiologically and financially from this plague,” said Assemblymember Rosenthal.

One bill, A.10081, addresses the financial impact of bedbugs by creating a personal income tax credit that victims can use to recoup costs expended on the furniture, bedding, clothing and other belongings that must be replaced because of bedbug damage. The tax credit would cover 15% of property purchased to replace discarded items, up to a maximum of $750 per person. The bill would also require the Department of Insurance to develop anti-fraud regulations governing the tax credit.

The other, A. 10356, grants prospective tenants and homeowners the right to a record of any bedbug infestation history within the property in question.

“The ability to obtain documentation on bedbugs in a specific building and apartment gives prospective residents a first line of defense against the nightmare of unwittingly renting or buying an infested home,” said Assemblymember Rosenthal. “The bedbug tax credit offers financial assistance to those who have fallen victim to this misfortune. Together, these bills will give tenants new protections and reduce the burden associated with this experience.”

Assemblymember Rosenthal (D/WF) represents the Upper West Side of Manhattan and parts of Clinton/Hell’s Kitchen.