CROWN POINT | The latest buzz in Lake County politics is a Republican blaming his opponent for the latest plague of mosquitoes.
Eric Krieg, the GOP nominee for surveyor, issued a news release Monday attempting to draw blood from Lake Surveyor George Van Til over the discovery last week of West Nile virus found in mosquitoes captured near Griffith.
Krieg argues stagnant water in roadside ditches on South Broad Street, near that town, is the fault of the surveyor's office, which has the responsibility of coordinating flood-control drainage in that stretch of unincorporated Calumet Township.
If elected surveyor, Krieg promised to put those ditches on his priority list.
"He is playing politics with something that is serious business," Van Til said.
Van Til said the South Broad Street area is a natural wetland because of its low, flat topography. He said the roadside ditches, maintained by the Lake County Highway Department, are one of many examples of standing water in that area.
Van Til he said the only legal drain his office is responsible for is Turkey Creek, which he said is in constant flow and shouldn't be harboring mosquitoes.
Van Til said the mosquitoes thrive in gutters, old tires or watering cans. "Krieg could be breeding West Nile virus in his own backyard," Van Til said.