EGG HARBOR CITY — A special meeting to discuss the possibility of ending city water fluoridation has been rescheduled for 7 p.m March 25.
It was originally set for March 5, but was cancelled for snow.
Fluoride is currently added in tiny amounts of about .7 parts per million, Water Department Superintendent Jerry Gleason has said.
It is used to strengthen teeth as they develop in young children, and to help prevent cavities for people of all ages.
Some opponents of water fluoridation say they have seen proof it harms human health, but the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta and scores of other medical and dental organizations support the practice.
Health organizations say fluroide, which is naturally occuring in much of the nation’s water supply, has no medical downside in the proper amounts.
Gleason has run the city’s water and sewer department more than 23 years, and has said he is the person who suggested the meeting. He’s been overseeing the fluoridation process all that time, and said he is not against it for medical reasons, just for practical ones related to running the plant and preventing waste.
Giving up the addition of fluoride will not save much money. The city spent $2,872 on the chemical last year in the form of hydrofluorosilicic acid, according to Gleason.
Egg Harbor City began fluoridation in the 1950s, when dental products and care were much less sophisticated than they are today.
Egg Harbor City and the Atlantic City Municipal Utilities Authority are the only water providers in our region who fluoridate water.
New Jersey American Water calls itself neutral on the issue, according to a statement on its web site, and has only fluoridated in response to community request.
IF YOU GO:
Egg Harbor City Council special meeting on the possibility of ending water fluoridation from city water, 7 p.m. March 25 at the Egg Harbor City Municipal Building, 500 London Avenue, Egg Harbor City.