Meeting Shows Opposition To Fluoride In Buffalo's Water

Buffalo Mayor Mike Johnson

A public forum held Monday evening in Buffalo to discuss the possibility of fluoridating Buffalo's municipal water showed those attending were predominantly against the idea, but open to looking into alternatives to help with the oral health of the county.

Dr. Mark Schueler, Public Health Officer for Johnson County, has been behind the latest drive to get fluoride added to the city's drinking water, citing studies showing the county with the highest incidents of cavities in the state, and his own observations of children and adults that show up in the Emergency Room with various problems with their teeth.
Dr. Schueler spoke briefly at the meeting so everyone understood his position in the matter, saying as the Public Health Officer, he probably should have pushed harder and sooner for fluoride to be added to Buffalo's water.

The remainder of the public forum was given to collecting opinions of those attending and to give them a chance to explain their positions.
The overwhelming majority of those attending were against adding fluoride to the city's water, but were open to looking into alternatives.

One such alterntive was offered by Buffalo dentist Dr. Brian Cotant, who suggested money that would be spent on adding fluoride to the city's water could be spent on prevention methods such as fluoride pills and fluoride varnishes to help improve the county's dental health.
Although he had no specifics on how a program might work, it was an idea most attending thought should be looked into. Between funding from the city, county and state, it was thought it could be a beneficial and sustainable program.

Mayor Mike Johnson addressed those attending the forum, saying no decision has been reached by the council, but he felt fluoride in the water still might not be a solution by itself.

No deciision was made at the meeting, and another public fiorum is scheduled for May 26th at 5pm in Buffalo's City Hall.

The plan is to have more information on fluoridation and other alternatives to discuss at that time.