Tenants on the other hand face stiff penalties if they do not follow the strict guidelines of the measure. As it is currently written, tenants must notify their landlords of any potential infestation and they must provide access to their apartments so that an inspection and treatment can commence by a licensed pest control expert. Everyone will agree that this is indeed good. The bad news is that penalties can be imposed if the tenant notifies the landlord of the bed bug infestation verbally, instead of in writing. A tenant that is non-compliant is liable for the cost of the bed bug treatment for his or her own apartment as wells as the adjoining apartments…top, bottom, left, and right included! Unlike with the landlord, the pending measure does not stipulate a spending limit that the tenant will be forced to pay for the pest control treatments, for each of the units, if the tenant is considered to be non-compliant.
This pending measure is not the first bed bug legislation that Arizona lawmakers have taken into consideration. In the spring of 2010, a bed bug bill that assigned various responsibilities to landlords, tenants, and pest management professionals died in the Arizona Senate after it passed overwhelmingly in the Arizona House. It was modeled after a pending New Jersey bed bug bill.
The fact is that as bed bug infestations continue to spread across the United States, desperate people are seeking desperate measures to try to get rid of the pesky bloodsuckers. But shouldn’t all laws, including bed bug laws, protect the majority of citizens? Because bed bugs have become proven to become pesticide resistant, even the best bed bug management practices make these bugs the most formidable pests to eradicate. It’s time that everyone works together for a unified solution…an end to bed bugs in America!