It has been brought to my attention that there are some questions and possibly concerns with the modification to the City’s mosquito control efforts this year. Therefore, I would like to take this opportunity to address the items I have heard.
This season, the City has received calls that we are spraying too much. Therefore, in July, we stopped spraying the alleys and only sprayed the streets. This modification seemed to help minimize the number of complaints. Operationally, we have changed out the Do Not Spray signs to reflect the current route patterns used by our drivers. With this particular concern, people were suggesting that we changed our spray machines or are using different chemicals. Neither are correct.
Each year in April, we send our sprayer to be droplet tested and certified. Once this is done, we do not change our chemical and we do not modify the spray of the machines. This third party certification ensures that the machines we use are putting out the correct spray droplet size and amount per the manufuacturers recommended dose. We absolutely do not modify this. Our operators are trained and they are provided a log sheet for their use each night they spray. This includes their beginning time and ending time. They are also instructed to clock in and out on our City time management system. This is done to ensure that each spray is the same every week. We will continue with the chemical, Fyfanlon, for the remainder of the season.
Our starting spray time remains the same at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday evenings. Each week the City is divided into two halves so one operator is on the West side of town and the other begins at the Veteran’s Waste Water facilty on the East side of town and they work towards the center of town. The employees are limited to drive no faster than 5-10 MPH while spraying and cannot spray if wind conditions are more than 7 mph or if it is raining. We are anticipating operations to continue until September 15, 2022. After that we will only spray the waste water lagoons. Our “Do Not Spray” list is a courtesy measure we use to try and address the differing opinions on mosquito control.
Future plans. As with all things, the City is continuing to look at ways to improve and to ensure the means justify the results. With the help of a citizens group, we are in the final stages of a community wide survey regarding mosquito control. We will launch the survey on September 7 and it will remain active until October 7th. We will, at that time, compile the results and hold a series of community meetings to discuss the mosquito program. The goal is to gain a better understanding of the community’s desire when it comes to mosquito control. Ultimately, City Council will decide what the future of the mosquito program will be. We are hoping for a large turn out. The survey will be on the City’s Website: https://cityofmontevista.colorado.gov/ and on our Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/cityofmontevista.
Robert Vance, Public Works Director