Fluoride Action Network

2 bills may halt water fluoridation

Source: Deseret News | Deseret News staff writer
Posted on February 12th, 2002
Location: United States, Utah

FARMINGTON — The Davis County Board of Health is opposing two bills recently introduced into the 2002 legislative session that, if passed, would effectively prevent water fluoridation.

HB158 would modify the Safe Drinking Water Act to prevent any substance from being added to public water supplies that has not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

The only problem is that the FDA does not approve fluoride substances.

“The FDA has no authority over water fluoridation. . . . It will never take a stand,” Lewis Garrett, director of the Davis County Health Department, said in a meeting this morning. “If this passes, it stops the water fluoridation projects in Davis and Salt Lake.”

Voters in Davis and Salt Lake counties voted in favor of fluoridating public water supplies in November 2000.

Rep. Glenn A. Donnelson, R-North Ogden, who is sponsoring the bill, says he is not trying to target fluoride but rather any substance that is not FDA-approved. He says if fluoride were safer, the FDA might approve it.

“We need to tighten it up so we don’t put garbage in the water,” he said. “I don’t want a fluoride grade that’s not safe.”

When asked if he was worried the bill might override the will of the voters, he replied, “I don’t know about that. I can’t answer that.”

The board of health is also opposing HB309, which is being sponsored by one of Davis County’s own, Rep. Roger E. Barrus, R-Centerville.

Last year a group of Centerville residents opposed to fluoride petitioned to have a revote on fluoride in the city, claiming the city’s water system was separate from the county’s and the vote in the city limits was extremely close in 2000. But in 2001, residents again voted in favor of fluoridation.

Barrus could not be reached for comment this morning.