San Diego

What's the Buzz? Mayor Gives $70,000 to Fight Flies in Mission Beach

An additional trash pick up will be added from July to early October

Many in Mission Beach are not asking 'What's the buzz' but rather 'Where's the buzz?'

San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer has allocated $70,000 to stop a continuing fly problem in the area.

Every year when the warm, summer weather arrives, the insect problem intensifies.

Trash in the area causes thousands of flies to swarm, pestering tourists and small business owners. 

"This is primarily a health and safety issue," said Councilmember Lorie Zapf of District 2. "When you have flies landing on food, when you have the fly infestation that happens in the summer, we as a city have to do something to eradicate the problem."

In the city budget, the mayor granted Mission Beach a second trash pickup from early July to the end of September to fight the flies. The second trash pickup will happen every Saturday on top of the normal weekly trash pickup each Tuesday. 

"You need two trash pickups within a week because if you wait a week the eggs hatch and you can't get on top of it," said Zapf.  

This method had success in 2016 and 2017, Zapf added. 

The mayor moved forward with the additional trash pickup despite warnings from San Diego City Attorney Mara Elliott that it could violate local law. 

In a memo from 2017, she said the additional trash pickup could be violating the People's Ordinance by doubling tax-payer service in an area where many are not living full-time. This is due to short-term vacation rentals that are packed with visitors to Mission Beach in the summer months. 

Others who live in the area think the money could be used towards something else. 

"Homelessness is a big issue around here," said Kimberly Farris. "There are so many things in Mission Beach that could be improved other than flies. That's nature!" 

There will be other trash pickups in Mission Beach that volunteers can come to and help keep the beaches clean. The first one is happening on May 12. 

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