Kapiti Coast District Council will again consult with the community about whether to continue adding fluoride to local water supplies.
Fluoride is currently added to public water supplied to Waikanae, Paraparaumu and Raumati but not Otaki or Paekakariki.
As part of Annual Plan discussions, Council considered a number of submissions from residents who want fluoride removed from drinking water because of concerns about health effects. Other councils are facing similar calls as they review their annual plans and Hamilton City recently voted to stop fluoridating its water supplies.
Three years ago, Kapiti Coast District Council consulted the community on the issue but voted in favour of retaining fluoride.
“It is clear this issue is not going to go away,” Mayor Jenny Rowan said today. “In fact concerns about fluoride appear to be gaining currency in our community. We need to take those concerns seriously.”
Councillors expressed frustration that local councils are being left to make decisions about whether or not to continue to fluoridate.
“This is a public health issue and policy around it rightly sits with the Ministry of Health,” says Mayor Rowan. “We support calls by Local Government New Zealand to make health authorities, not local councils, responsible.”
Council opted to initiate a special consultative process to gain more information and canvass community opinion on whether it should continue to add fluoride to Waikanae, Paraparaumu and Raumati water supplies. It also resolved to seek the support of other councils in submitting a remit to the Local Government New Zealand conference supporting moves to make decisions on fluoridation the responsibility of the appropriate health authorities.