The Saukville Village Board has no intention of reconsidering its earlier decision to discontinue fluoridation of municipal water.
That was the message that came through following a non-discussion of the topic during the July 19 meeting of the village’s Finance Committee.
An item under the “Other Matters” portion of the committee agenda simply stated “Fluoridation.”
Village President Barb Dickmann explained that the item was included on the agenda in case any trustees felt the board’s vote to drop fluoridation was worth reconsidering.
In April, trustees unanimously agreed to stop treating municipal water with fluoride in reaction to the expense linked to including treatment equipment at Well No. 6, which is being built in the village’s business park.
The municipal water utility has been spending about $4,000 a year on fluoride treatments at its existing wells, although officials noted there would be significant expense in installing storage and monitoring equipment at the new well building.
In addition, village officials noted that only about 4% of the roughly 1.2 million gallons of water used by utility customers each day is ingested.
Since making that decision, village officials have faced criticism from several sources, including a local dentist, the Ozaukee County Health Department and the Wisconsin Oral Health Coalition.
All said the village action ignored the health benefits of fluoridation, especially for children.
Proponents of retaining the treatment said cost concerns could be eliminated if the village pursued grant money that is available to communities.
Recognizing the split opinions on fluoridation, Dickmann informally polled trustees during the committee meeting on whether there was any interest in reopening the issue.
After all of the trustees said they are content with the decision to stop fluoridating, the topic was dropped.
The village’s water utility expects to exhaust its supply of fluoride (or fluorsilicic acid) this summer.