A new bill was recently passed by the Wisconsin Senate that will require landlords that rent out single-family homes and duplexes to install carbon monoxide detectors on all floors of these dwellings by Febraury 1, 2011.
Senate Bill 415 was passed 69-27 via voice vote after the Assembly previously passed the bill by a 2/3′s margin. You can read the entire history of the bill here. It is anticipated that the Governor will sign the bill.
SB 415 requires the owner of most buildings that contain one or two dwelling units to install a carbon monoxide detector in the basement and on each floor of the dwelling unit except for the attic.
Additionally, the bill requires that if the tenant notifies the owner in writing that a detector is not working properly, that the owner must perform the necessary maintenance to repair the detector or replace it within 5 days after receipt of the notice by the tenant.
The bill also exempts an owner for any liability for any false alarms or from the failure of the detector to work properly if its failure was due to tampering, as long as the owner reasonably maintained the detector.
Existing 1 and 2 unit dwellings will be allowed to use battery operated carbon monoxide detectors.
A carbon monoxide detector is not required to be installed if the unit does not have an attached garage, has no fireplace, and has no fuel-burning appliances.
Finally, the bill authorizes a building inspector to inspect new dwellings, and if requested to do so by the owner or tenant, to inspect the interior of an existing rental unit to ensure that the owner has complied with the requirements set forth in this bill.
This new law will become effective as of February 1, 2011 and will be contained in Section 101.647 of the Wisconsin Statutes.
Please remember that the carbon monoxide law that affects rentals that include 3 units or greater goes into effect April 1, 2010. This law can be found in Sec. 101.149, of the Wisconsin Statutes. ADDED 3/1/10: These regulations were issued as emergency rules by the Department of Commerce, Safety and Building Division, as required 2007 Wisconsin Act 205 (in April 2008). The Wisconsin Department of Commerce’s brochure on this law is very informative.
Thanks to Atty. Heiner Giese for forwarding this information to me.