The County Board of Supervisors Tuesday gave cities in the South Bay and Southeast areas until Oct. 31 to join a mosquito abatement district and begin paying for mosquito control services now funded by the county.
During the changeover period from July 1 to Oct. 31, the board authorized spending $400,000 to protect about a dozen cities in the South Bay, a handful of cities in the Southeast area, and more than 25 cities in the San Gabriel Valley. The valley was given until the summer of 1988 to create a new mosquito abatement district.
Dana said San Gabriel Valley cities are being treated differently because they have to form a valley-wide district, which "could take some time."
Since 1984, when a surprise outbreak of the mosquito-borne St. Louis encephalitis virus infected 16 people in the county, killing one and contributing to the deaths of two others, the county Department of Health Services has paid the bill for controlling mosquitoes in non-member cities.
County officials said many cities have been reluctant to join a district because, before the 1984 outbreak, only a handful of cases of mosquito-borne encephalitis had been reported in the county.