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The debate over adding fluoride to the City's water supply is back. After two years, the City of San Diego is forced to revisit the issue.

State law requires large water suppliers to fluoridate its drinking water in hopes of preventing dental disease and improving oral health in children. At the same time, the State gives a pass to any public agency if no outside funding is available. So, for more than ten years, the City of San Diego held off just for that reason.

By 2008, according to some county officials, the City of San Diego was the largest municipality in the country without fluoridated water.

That same year came an offer from the First 5 Commission, a county sponsored child health-care program paid for with Proposition 10 tax revenues, to give the City $3.9 million to fluoridate its water at three water treatment plants. The money also paid for two years of operations and maintenance. And, in February 2011, the City began adding the additive to its drinking water.

The decision wasn't without controversy then and isn't to this day. Now the money has nearly run dry and the debate has resurfaced.

"Fluoride is a toxic poison perpetrated on the people by the ADA, and government officials," reads a Facebook page entitled "Stop Fluoridation in San Diego's Public Water Supply."

"Fluoride is a potent poison and industrial waste product, used in rat and cockroach poison and the military sarin nerve gas."

And conversely, lobbyists are once again roaming City Hall in search of support for fluoridation. A recent lobbying disclosure shows the California Dental Association has once again turned to Richard Ledford, a former aide to Mayor Susan Golding, to lobby city officials in support of fluoridation.

But first the City must identify any legal obstacles. In a March 14 memo, the City Attorney's office attempted to do just that.

According to the City Attorney, the City could still be exempt from State law if outside funding is no longer available.

"There are two separate funding conditions that trigger compliance with the state fluoridation mandate. The first concerns the installation of a fluoridation system, which has already been completed by the City. The second concerns the operation of the fluoridation system. Compliance with this requirement is necessary “in any given fiscal year (July 1-June 30)” when funds from an outside source become available “sufficient to pay noncapital operation and maintenance costs"...Conversely, absent outside funding, the City does not have a legal obligation to continue fluoridating its public water supply after the initial outside funding is exhausted," reads the memo.

"SDMC section 67.0101 is preempted by state law, and is therefore not an impediment to continued fluoridation of the City’s water supply. If further outside funding is unavailable, the City has discretion to continue or to stop fluoridation. Water enterprise funds may be used to continue fluoridation, but a Proposition 218 process may be necessary if sufficient water funds are not available."

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Comments

mridolf March 20, 2013 @ 8:06 p.m.

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monaghan March 20, 2013 @ 1:29 p.m.

Incredible to learn here that state law regarding fluoridation allows a two-step process -- funding for "installation" separate from funding for "operation." It's a reminder that this is still a land of anti-science wackos who retain standing with our compliant Sacramento legislators. i

A year or so ago even the La Jolla Democratic Club's monthly meeting was given over to a magical-thinking propagandist who regularly appears during City Council public comment to preach from the know-nothing text that fluoride-is-rat-and-roach poison.

Scott Marks is right on target, recalling the general's belief system from "Dr. Strangelove."

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MJohnson March 25, 2013 @ 7:06 a.m.

The pro-F proponents use name calling as a strategy to try and discredit anyone speaking out against adding fluorosilicic acid to the water supply. 2006 NRC EPA Fluoride in Drinking Water reports the system health damage caused by ingesting this chemical, as well as "suspected" damage. Dr. Kathleen Thiessen, a member on the NRC panel for this report, also wrote about the findings in 2011 in a paper called "General Comments on Fluoridation in Drinking Water", where she says:

“The proposed HHS recommendation for water fluoridation at 0.7 mg/L is not adequate to protect against known or anticipated adverse effects and does not allow an adequate margin of safety to protect young children, people with high water consumption, people with kidney disease (resulting in reduced excretion of fluoride), and other potentially sensitive population subgroups….

…It is irresponsible to recommend addition of fluoride, or a particular concentration of fluoride to be added, without a comprehensive review of the substances (H2SiF6 or Na2SiF6,) that are actually added. In addition, fluoridation chemicals often contain impurities such as lead and arsenic, for which EPA has set MCLGs of zero (EPA 2006), such that a water supplier is actually adding contaminants for which the ideal maximum amount in drinking water is zero.

In summary, it is irresponsible to promote or encourage uncontrolled exposure of any population to a drug that, at best, is not appropriate for many individuals (e.g., those who do not want it, those whose water consumption is high, formula-fed infants, people with impaired renal function) and for which the risks are inadequately characterized and inadequately disclosed to the public. Elimination of community water fluoridation at the earliest possible date would be in the best interest of public health.” http://fluorideinformationaustralia.files.wordpress.com/2013/01/thiessen_113885883-general-fluoridation-statement-thiessen.pdf

San Diego should take these chemicals out, and keep them out.

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JayJzz March 20, 2013 @ 6:45 p.m.

The only thing that should be added to water is a sanitizer like Chlorine ... without it, we would get slime out of our faucets ... Today, toothpaste contains all the flouride you need, topically

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nyscof March 21, 2013 @ 6:22 a.m.

Fluoridation Opposition is Scientific, Respectable & Growing

New York – March 2013 -- More than 4,500 professionals (including 343 dentists and 538 MD’s) urge that fluoridation be stopped because fluoridation is ineffective and harmful. See statement: http://www.fluoridealert.org/researchers/professionals-statement/text/

Most dentists are trained to use politics and not science to promote fluoridation, according to Armfield and Melbye in the Journal of the American Dental Association . The researchers write: "Studies of dentists' attitudes about water fluoridation suggest that a lack of knowledge and preparedness are barriers to discussing the topic ... more than one-half of the respondents believed they needed more information and training on the issue.

Armfield and Melbye postulate that: "Dentists' lack of self-efficacy with respect to critically evaluating scientific literature may help to explain their reluctance to promote water fluoridation in their clinical practices." Other studies how dentists don’t keep current on new fluoride science, e.g. this research y by Yoder http://tinyurl.com/Yoder

Dr. Yolanda Whyte, a primary care pediatrician, explains why she no longer supports water fluoridation. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6iu9HzaVbWQ

Fluoridation is an "unacceptable risk," says Public Health Professor Niyi Awofeso (Public Health Ethics, August 2012). He writes, "There is insufficient ethical justification for artificial water fluoridation" because no evidence supports the assertion that artificial fluoridation reduces social disparities in cavity incidence, fluoridation’s effectiveness is questionable, potential adverse effects of fluoride, such as hypothyroidism and bone fractures, have been reported in scholarly journals and fluoridation chemicals are contaminated with lead, arsenic and mercury.

In 2006, a National Research Council expert panel published a fluoride report which revealed that fluoride, even at low doses added to water supplies, can be especially harmful to the thyroid gland, kidney patients, babies, seniors and people who drink high amounts of water. They also revealed critical fluoride safety studies have never been done and studies linking fluoride to cancer and lower IQ are plausible.

Thirty-six human studies now link fluoride to lowered IQ, some at levels considered safe in the US. See: http://www.fluoridealert.org/articles/iq-facts/

After 68 years of water fluoridation, the Centers for Disease Control reports that up to 60% of 12-15 year-olds are affected with fluoride overdose symptoms – dental fluorosis, white spotted, yellow, brown and/or pitted teeth. Yet, the CDC says More young kids face cavity crisis in US

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monaghan March 21, 2013 @ 8:40 a.m.

Youtube aside, of course, I'm looking for single respectable scientific source for nyscof's anti-fluoridation baloney.

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MJohnson March 25, 2013 @ 7:09 a.m.

Academy of Sciences National Research Council 2006 EPA Fluoride in Drinking Water: A Scientific Review"

http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=1

You have to really read it though.....it's 500 pages. Also, there is another 300+ report out of Ireland as well:

http://www.enviro.ie/Human%20Toxicity,%20Environmental%20Impact%20and%20Legal%20Implications%20of%20Water%20Fluoridation_February%202012_EnviroManagement%20Services.pdf

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MJohnson March 25, 2013 @ 8 a.m.

National Research Council Academy of Sciences 2006 EPA report "Fluoride in Drinking Water: A Scientific Review" available free online.

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GeneB March 24, 2013 @ 1:40 p.m.

More great ideas from the birth-of-fluoridation era:

19,293 DENTISTS ADVISE ... SMOKE VICEROYS!

Life Magazine ad -10/27/1947

http://gogd.tjs-labs.com/show-picture?id=1054747811

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Dollarfray May 11, 2013 @ 1 a.m.

Flouride does not belong in drinking water. There is new scientific data that shows it can be toxic and is not helping prevent tooth decay. The lobby to continue adding it must be very powerful.

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jshar7980 June 12, 2013 @ 8:55 a.m.

Olivenhain Municipal Water District has informed it's customers that it will start fluoridation of our water on July 1st. This is nothing short of mass medication without a prescription!

The fluoride to be added is a chemical by-product of the fertilizer industry and there is no way of knowing how much any one person will ingest. This is especially dangerous to children, the ones who will most likely drink tap water!

Look on your tube of fluoridated toothpaste - there is a warning there, "DO NOT SWALLOW"!

OMWD states in it's letter that if anyone has a problem with the fluoridation they can buy a reverse osmosis water filter to filter it out. This is the height of snobbery as it is the lower socio-economic family that probably cannot afford the filter and most probably drinks the tap water on a regular basis.

The City of Portland, Oregon just rejected by fluoridation of it's water supply, for the fourth time. All the facts about fluoridation can be obtained online. There is wealth of evidence against the practice.

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