Fluoride remains a hot topic as submissions to Taranaki councils’ Long-Term Plans are finalised.
Fluoride in the region’s water supply has seen the highest proportion of submissions received on a single issue, by both the New Plymouth District Council (NPDC) and Stratford District Council (SDC).
Public submissions on Long-Term Plan (LTP) proposals have now closed for all three district councils in the region. The South Taranaki District Council are yet to release their submission results.
In a meeting last Thursday the SDC was not influenced by submissions made opposing fluoridation and unanimously decided to continue with their fluoridation programme.
Currently, the council’s two smaller water supplies in Toko and Midhirst are not fluoridated due to the small volume, while Stratford’s supply is.
Out of the 167 submissions to the SDC’s proposed LTP, 67 submissions were made regarding fluoride. Opposition largely came from outside the region, from national bodies against fluoride as well as individual complainants.
The Taranaki District Health Board made numerous submissions commending the council’s decision to continue fluoridation in the town’s water supply.
Dentists from Stratford and New Plymouth also congratulated the council for backing the fluoridation scheme, along with numerous residents.
The NPDC received nearly 700 submissions on its proposed 2015-2025 LTP, with 280 of those on the topic of fluoride. These submissions have not been released yet.
Mayor Andrew Judd said council was grateful for the submissions which would provide “a clearer picture of the community’s priorities.”
Submitters now get the opportunity to speak to their formal submissions and 80 submitters will be heard at hearings scheduled from June 2-4.
All three councils are scheduled to adopt a final Long-Term Plan by June 30.