Mosquito districts reorganized

Butte County moves to absorb Oroville mosquito district

Last Thursday (Dec. 7), the Butte Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCo) voted unanimously to finalize a review of two tiny, taxpayer-funded mosquito abatement districts in Oroville and Durham.

The vote put the Durham Mosquito Abatement District on probation for one year to bring its level of service up to that of the Butte County Mosquito and Vector Control District and annexed about 15,000 acres of rice fields the district has failed to treat effectively. LAFCo is also pushing for the eventual dissolution of the Oroville Mosquito Abatement District, which monitors and treats 12.7 square miles of mosquito territory.

In September, Jeff Cahn, the Oroville district’s longtime manager and sole staff member, was killed in an auto accident on Highway 99. The tragedy left the agency with nobody to oversee day-to-day operations, and meanwhile, two members of its five-member board were removed due to not living within district boundaries.

For the upcoming mosquito season, Oroville will contract with the county.