Tuesday, February 9, 2016
More Mosquito Bites...
Last night (08 February 2016), the Mt. Pleasant City Commission met for their regularly scheduled meeting. One of their agenda items included a proposal to cancel a contract with APM Mosquito Control for the summer of 2016. This contract was approved during a Commission meeting in November and has been under scrutiny by the public since that time. Several newly elected commission member requested that the issue be brought back to the table so the item was placed on the agenda for last night's meeting.
I think the commission was surprised by the amount of public input on this subject. The commission received several written communications on the subject, mostly against spraying. During the public comment period of the meeting, approximately a dozen people opted to speak on the subject. I once again spoke about the potential long term ecological effects of long-term nuisance mosquito control. I was quickly followed by a representative of APM Mosquito Control who quickly tried to refute several of the statistics that I cited.
Many city residents urged the commission to make an informed decision based on need for the proposed mosquito control. I even stated that if there was a public health issue that I would support control measures, but because mosquitoes are currently only a nuisance I could not support the measures based on the science.
In the end, the commission voted unanimously to cancel the proposed mosquito control contract for 2016, but wants to work with APM to conduct surveillance of mosquito populations to establish a baseline of population data and determine if there is a significant disease problem in Mt Pleasant's mosquitoes.. I think this is a sensible approach that the commission should have taken from the beginning and I applaud their willingness to listen to both public opinion and scientific data.
To read more about this subject please check out this post from February 3rd.