LIVINGSTON PARISH, LA (WAFB) - After two failed tax proposals, the Mosquito Abatement Program in Livingston Parish has shutdown. The trucks that belonged to the program have been donated to four municipalities in the parish: City of Denham Springs, City of Walker, Town of Albany and Town of Livingston.
Those programs are being run at no cost to taxpayers.
"We get thumbs up when people are outside when we come through spraying," said one of the mosquito truck drivers in Livingston.
Every Thursday night from 7 to 10 pm, the truck travels around to cover the town.
"If we can kill the one that's carrying West Nile or Encephalitis, or the one that bites your baby, or my grandbaby, it's worth it," said Livingston Mayor Derral Jones.
While the trucks were donated to each of those four places, each town and city pays for the workers to drive the truck and the chemicals that are used.
"I got a thank you not in the mail just yesterday. Hand-written thanks for spraying for mosquitoes," said Denham Springs Mayor Gerard Landry.
Landry said the city actually had an abatement program prior to the parish-wide one. But when the parish-wide program went under, the city pulled out their old sprayer and also took one of the donated trucks.
"My thought was this, what if my old one breaks down. If I have two, I can probably spray twice as much, in half the time," said Landry.
He added that a consultant works with them on how often to spray and how much chemical to use. Landry said the city made budget adjustments after the first half of the year and moved those dollars to cover the cost of the spraying.
In the Town of Livingston, Mayor Jones has estimated the cost to run their program at $12,000 a year. He said those dollars were already in the budget.
Walker Mayor Rick Ramsey said they are waiting for their truck driver to take a test to be certified to run their spray truck. That should happen in October.
He said they will also have a public meeting before they begin spraying to take input from the community.