COLUMBIA, Tenn. (AP) – A fourth Middle Tennessee city is discussing whether to remove fluoride from the municipal water supply.
Columbia Power and Water System Manager Wes Kelley told The Columbia Daily Herald that the issue has sparked opposition from health officials and dentists, though it has gotten support from some residents.
The utility board is mulling the proposal for a couple of reasons. Kelley said fluoride provides no water purification benefit, but it cost $40,000 annually to add it to the supply. In addition, he said the chemical is hazardous to employees who handle it.
Dentists and health officials are urging the utility to keep adding the mineral to the water, noting that it prevents tooth decay.
The board plans to vote on the matter on Sept. 25.
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