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Fluoridation on water utility board agenda today

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The public debate about drinking-water fluoridation resumes today, and the discussion will include a proposal that would put an advisory question to Bernalillo County voters next year.

The Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility board will meet at 5 p.m. today at One Civic Plaza Government Center, Vincent Griego Chambers.

The board will consider a proposed $260,000 capital appropriation to pay for equipment needed to allow the utility to resume supplemental fluoridation, which ended in 2011.

Board members also will consider a resolution that would ask Bernalillo County Commissioners to place an advisory question on the November 2018 general election ballot.

The resolution, sponsored by Albuquerque Councilor Pat Davis, a utility board member, would ask county voters if they approve or oppose adding fluoride to the utility’s water supply.

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Fluoride is a mineral found naturally in Albuquerque’s water supply at levels of about 0.5 milligram per liter, according to a utility report.

In 1970, a 57 percent majority of Albuquerque voters approved fluoridating the city’s water supply.

The city began supplemental fluoridation in 1972, but ended the practice in 2011 while federal officials considered new recommendations.

In 2015, the U.S. Public Health Service recommended that community water systems add fluoride to 0.7 milligrams per liter to prevent tooth decay.


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