PORT ORANGE — Officials have returned to the debate about fluoride in city water. They are, however, no closer to discontinuing the practice of adding it than they were the last few times they’ve considered options for the chemical.
Next week, the council will revisit the subject again at a workshop and will gather information from a toxicology expert and fluoridation opponent.
Port Orange has fluoridated its water since 1983. The supply reaches more than 68,000 people.
… The subject recently came up again, Public Utilities Director Andy Neff said at an Oct. 27 workshop that broached the topic.
Steven J. Duranceau, an associate professor from the University of Central Florida’s College of Engineering and Computer Sciences and an expert in water treatment, presented facts about the benefits and concerns of adding fluoride to the water supply. Duranceau holds advanced degrees in chemistry and engineering. He spoke about the positives and negatives of the fluoride debate.
Citizens and council members, though, were concerned his presence did not satisfy an earlier request that the city provide a medical expert to cite data and studies on the health effects of fluoride.
“This council made a promise to the citizens of Port Orange that they would bring in experts — not people with opinions like me — but medical experts who would present the other case. That hasn’t happened,” said Ted Noftall, a resident who has spoken against the city’s fluoridation program in the past and is currently running for mayor.
While City Manager Jake Johansson realized that was the case, he said that, although he has found medical experts that could speak factually against adding fluoride, he has been having trouble getting them to speak at City Hall…
Johansson said he had found a toxicology expert to address the City Council and residents from an anti-fluoride perspective. Paul Connett, Ph.D., director of the Fluoride Action Network and lead author of “The Case Against Fluoride” is set to speak at a City Council workshop Tuesday.