Senate Concurrent ResolutionNo. 121

Introduced by Senator Wieckowski

March 28, 2016

Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 121—Relative to West Nile Virus and Mosquito and Vector Control Awareness Week.


SCR 121, as introduced, Wieckowski. West Nile Virus and Mosquito and Vector Control Awareness Week.

This measure would declare the week of April 17, 2016, to April 23, 2016, inclusive, as West Nile Virus and Mosquito and Vector Control Awareness Week in California.

Fiscal committee: no.

P1    1WHEREAS, West Nile virus is a mosquito-borne disease that
2can result in debilitating cases of meningitis and encephalitis and
3death to humans, horses, avian species, and other wildlife; and

4WHEREAS, In 2015, West Nile virus resulted in 45 human
5deaths in California, triple the number from 2013, and 737
6individual cases in 31 counties; and

7WHEREAS, Adequately funded mosquito and vector control,
8disease surveillance, and public awareness programs, coupled with
9best management practices on public and private lands, are the
10best ways to prevent outbreaks of West Nile virus and other
11diseases borne by mosquitoes and other vectors; and

12WHEREAS, Mosquitoes and other vectors, including, but not
13limited to, ticks, Africanized honeybees, rats, fleas, and flies,
14continue to be a source of human suffering, illness, and death, and
15a public nuisance in California and around the world; and

P2    1WHEREAS, Excess numbers of mosquitoes and other vectors
2spread diseases, reduce enjoyment of both public and private
3outdoor living spaces, reduce property values, hinder outdoor work,
4reduce livestock productivity, and have a negative impact on the
5environment; and

6WHEREAS, As a result of the threat mosquitos posed to
7California’s economic development and the health of its citizens,
8the Legislature enacted the Mosquito Abatement Districts Act,
9just over a century ago, in 1915; and

10WHEREAS, Professional mosquito and vector control based
11on scientific research has made great advances in safely reducing
12 mosquito and vector populations and the diseases they transmit;

14WHEREAS, Established mosquito- and vector-borne diseases,
15such as plague, Lyme disease, flea-borne typhus, and encephalitis,
16new and emerging vector-borne diseases, such as hantavirus and
17babesiosis, and travel-associated mosquito-borne disease threats,
18such as dengue, chikungunya, and Zika, can cause illness and
19sometimes death in California; and

20WHEREAS, Two invasive mosquito species in California, Aedes
21albopictus, the Asian tiger mosquito, which was detected in
22southern California in 2011, and Aedes aegypti, the yellow fever
23mosquito, which was detected in central and northern California
24in 2013, and in southern California in 2014, are posing new public
25health threats due to their capability to transmit potentially deadly
26or debilitating diseases, such as dengue, yellow fever, and
27chikungunya, diseases that are not currently transmitted in
28California, as well as other encephalitis-causing viruses; and

29WHEREAS, These invasive species of mosquitos are responsible
30for transmitting the Zika virus, an infectious disease that has seen
31growth in Latin America over the past several months. Public
32health officials have recommended that pregnant women, in any
33trimester, avoid traveling to areas where Zika virus transmission
34is ongoing; and

35WHEREAS, Mosquito and vector control districts throughout
36the State of California work closely with the United States
37Environmental Protection Agency and the State Department of
38Public Health to reduce pesticide risks to humans, animals, and
39the environment while protecting human health from mosquito-
40and vector-borne diseases and nuisance attacks; and

P3    1WHEREAS, Best management practices, emphasizing
2nonchemical approaches, have been developed to guide mosquito
3control that can significantly reduce mosquito populations for new
4development and on state and private lands; and

5WHEREAS, The State Department of Public Health maintains
6information on how to eliminate risks from vectors at both and, which the public is
8encouraged to review; and

9WHEREAS, The public’s awareness of the health benefits
10associated with safe, professionally applied mosquito and vector
11control methods will support these efforts, as well as motivate the
12state and the public to eliminate mosquito and vector breeding
13sites on public and private property; and

14WHEREAS, Educational programs have been developed to
15include schools, civic groups, private industry, and government
16agencies, in order to meet the public’s need for information about
17West Nile virus, other diseases, and mosquito and vector biology
18and control; and

19WHEREAS, Public awareness can result in reduced production
20of mosquitoes and other vectors on residential, commercial, and
21public lands by responsible parties, avoidance of the bites of
22mosquitoes and other vectors when the risk of West Nile virus and
23other disease transmission is high, detection of human cases of
24mosquito- and vector-borne diseases that may otherwise be
25misdiagnosed for lack of appropriate laboratory testing, and the
26formation of mosquito or vector control agencies where needed;

28WHEREAS, Public awareness can result in action to provide
29adequate funding for existing mosquito and vector control agencies
30or to create control agencies in areas where there are no existing
31controls; and

32WHEREAS, West Nile Virus and Mosquito and Vector Control
33Awareness Week will increase the public’s awareness of the threat
34of West Nile virus and other diseases and the activities of the
35various mosquito and vector research and control agencies working
36to minimize the health threat within California, and will highlight
37the educational programs currently available; and

38WHEREAS, The Mosquito and Vector Control Association of
39California has designated the week of April 17, 2016, to April 23,
P4    12016, inclusive, as West Nile Virus and Mosquito and Vector
2Control Awareness Week in California; now, therefore, be it

3Resolved by the Senate of the State of California, the Assembly
4thereof concurring,
That the Legislature hereby declares the week
5of April 17, 2016, to April 23, 2016, inclusive, as West Nile Virus
6and Mosquito and Vector Control Awareness Week in California;
7and be it further

8Resolved, That the Secretary of the Senate transmit a copy of
9this resolution to the Governor, the State Public Health Officer,
10and the author for appropriate distribution.