abolishing fluoridation in water. INEXPEDIENT TO LEGISLATE.
Rep. Paula Francese for Resources, Recreation and Development. This bill would prohibit the introduction of fluoride into drinking water supplies in the state. It contains a number of issues of concern for the committee. Tooth decay is one of the most common chronic diseases among American children. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, one of four children living below the federal poverty level experience untreated tooth decay. The safety and benefits of fluoride are well documented and have been reviewed comprehensively by several scientific and public health organizations. No convincing scientific evidence has been found linking fluoridation with any potential adverse health effect or systemic disorder. With regard to cost, according to the American Dental Association the cost of a lifetime of water fluoridation is less than the cost of a single filling. By preventing tooth decay, community water fluoridation has been shown to save money, both for families and the health care system. SB 449, passed in 2004, established a procedure for voting on the introduction of fluoride into public water supplies at the local level. New Hampshire statutes specify procedures by which supplemental fluoridation of public water supplies can be accomplished. These statutes require that any proposal to fluoridate be subject to a vote and that majority approval is needed to begin fluoridation. Once fluoridation begins, the Department of Environmental Services monitors water supplies to ensure the proper concentration is achieved and maintained. Further, test kits are available for homeowners whose artesian well water contains naturally occurring fluoride. The committee believes that the pros and cons of fluoridation is a subject individuals and families need to discuss with their health care providers and that community water fluoridation is a decision best made at the local level. Vote 16-2.