Libby here, from the Moab Mosquito Abatement District (MMAD), an independent local district not under the authority of Grand County, or the City of Moab. Think landfill or cemetery services, autonomous taxing entities that provide special services to taxpayers that the City or County does not cover.
Just past my 2.5 year mark now as new Manager, I have made some mistakes. Chief among them is my lack of a dedicated web site, at minimum, to keep everyone informed as to what we are doing through this massive onslaught of mosquitos. I sincerely apologize and will say that this will change; many things are changing and will continue to change for the better.
But, I have also had some successes as the new manager in updating a district that was rooted in the twentieth century, updating policies, equipment, safer and smarter ways to work. As with another hot-button issue in the County, my authority to do my job is directed by State Law — Utah Code 17B-2a-Part 7 — hand-in-hand with my five-member board of trustees.
While I will do my best to listen and respond to everyone that has a question or opinion about fogging, or not fogging, or bees, or fish, or any number of issues, at the end of the day, I cannot and will not run the district based on whose voices are loudest, or who is happiest, or who is not. Science simply does not work this way, nor does the authority given to all MADs in the state of Utah. If you are unhappy with this way of operating the district, please do appeal to your State Legislators.
I have had to make many new and often sudden decisions this year that have always been guided by my professional organization, the Utah Mosquito Abatement Association. I am trying to align our district with the scientific policies in place statewide; those who have been doing mosquito abatement for over 100 years, as is the case in Salt Lake City. Their Ph.D. vector scientist and president-elect of the American Mosquito Control Association helps me make clear decisions, and if you need his input, he will arrange this at some point in the future when we are both less than chaotic fighting mosquitoes.
There are many more things I need to update you on. I will start with this letter and continue providing information on the county website they have set up until a dedicated MMAD website is built, www.grandcountyutah.net. They and so many others have stepped up incredibly to help the MMAD — thank you. My next update will include more information regarding West Nile virus, some initial results from the aerial larviciding effort, fogging schedules and routes and more answers to your questions. Please bear with us as we do our jobs. Incredible thanks go to the crew: Mark, David and Shanon. They are risking their lives out there daily, in the heat, working for you.
Moab Mosquito Abatement District manger