Anchor ads are not supported on this page.

4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Debate over fluoride in water resurfaces in San Diego

Outside funding is running dry and the City must decide what to do about the fluoridation of the water supply.

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."

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Wing Wars: Chicken Wing Crawl Competition, Thrift Store Treasure Bazaar

Events March 9-March 13, 2024

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."

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox Movies@Home — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close

Anchor ads are not supported on this page.