Thursday, May 22, 2014

Research Q of the Week: The Buzz on Mosquitoes and Bees (5/22)

Question: With as much rain as we have had, it’s hard not to think about the insects coming our way. So, what can cities do about insects?

Answer: Insects and bugs are a part of life in Minnesota. Don't you love that repetitive splat on your windshield as you drive? While cities can’t regulate where insects and bugs choose to live, there are some things a city can do, such as regulating beekeeping or abating mosquitoes.

Bees: Since 2006, beekeeping is no longer regulated by state law, except for apiary inspection services related to the transportation of bees to other states. Cities may choose to regulate beekeeping within city limits. Some cities prohibit the practice while others allow it after obtaining a permit, and some cities allow it outright.

Mosquitoes: The abatement or suppression of mosquitoes is advisable and necessary for the maintenance and improvement of the health, welfare, and prosperity of the people. Areas where mosquitoes incubate or hatch are considered public nuisances and may be abated under state law. Cities have the direct authority to participate in mosquito abatement efforts. The city may establish a mosquito abatement board to oversee abatement efforts. The city may also levy a tax or issue certificates of indebtedness to pay for the program.

If cities are finding that bees and mosquitoes are getting in their hair, they have the discretion to do something about it. Check out the Animal Regulation in Cities memo for more info.

This blog post conveys general information. It’s not legal advice. Please check with your city attorney before acting on this information.

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