GMO mosquito referendum now open to all Florida Keys voters

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(Rafaelgilo / Wikipedia / MGN)

KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) – All Florida Keys residents will have a say in whether genetically modified mosquitoes should be released in their island chain.

The Citizen in Key West reports that the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District board voted 3-2 on Tuesday to extend an Aug. 30 referendum on the project to all Monroe County voters.

The biotech firm Oxitec wants to demonstrate its modified mosquitoes in a neighborhood north of Key West.

The board previously decided to ask only Key Haven residents whether they approved of the test. Next month, the commissioners will decide whether the vote should be binding.

The district wants to try Oxitec’s mosquitoes to kill off a disease-carrying species. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration still must decide whether to allow the test to proceed.

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