Fluoridation

For meeting summaries through October, 2017, click here.

 


Town Boad 6-19-2020

During Courtesy of the  Floor, two speakers urged the board to proceed with the delayed fluoridation project and not wait for written confirmation from the state that the grant money would be forthcoming.  Dr. Carl Tegtmeier, a dentist, spoke about the value of fluoridation and the support it has within the health community. Susan Siegel, the person writing this summary, said that the $700,000 needed to complete the project was available and that completing the project was a critical health issue.

 

In response, Mr. Quinn said that Yorktown’s request to the state Department of Health has been “elevated” but that there still was no way of knowing if or when the existing grant, which has expired, would be renewed. He advised the board that all the necessary paperwork for the project to proceed has been completed but he is still waiting for a written confirmation from the state that the grant will be extended before instructing the contractor to begin work.

 

Councilman Diana said the town should wait for the state to act before proceeding.


Town Board, 5-19-2020

During Courtesy of the Floor, Mark Lieberman asked for a status report on the fluoridation project. In response, Mr. Quinn explained that construction had not stated because of New York Pause but that the contract6or was taking care of required paperwork behind the scene. He also advised the board that the state grant, which already has one extension, would expire at the end of May and that he has verbal, but not written confirmation that it will be extended again.  The board, however, expressed concern over the state of  New York’s finances and whether the state would reimburse the town for expenses once construction starts.


Town Board, 12-10-2019

(See Town Board, 12-3-2019 budget hearing for discussion about fluoridation.) The board awarded the bid for the construction of the new fluoridation system for the Catskill water supply. In addition to the $700,000 already set aside for the project, the board voted to transfer $149,970 from the water district’s fund balance. Once the funds are expended, the town will be reimbursed pursuant to a state grant.


Town Board, 11-26-2019

Although not on the agenda, Mr. Quinn gave the board an update on the status of the fluoridation bids that were received November 1st.  Because the bids came in higher than expected, the town met with the Department of Health and got the department to reverse itself on a flow meter that it had initially requested be added to the design. The reversal reduced the cost of the project by $200,000, for a net cost of $849.970.

 

The town has an $901,500 state grant for the project. The town has already spent $209,000 for the design, leaving a $157,470 shortfall needed to complete the project.  Mr. Quinn will meet with the water superintendent and the town comptroller to  review the financing situation.


Town Board 9-10-2019

The board voted to advertise for bids for the construction of a fluoridation facility for the Catskill Water supply.


Town Board, 4-2-2019

Referring to a recent Facebook post by Councilman Lachterman, during Courtesy of the Floor, Mark Lieberman suggested that social media was not the place to discuss the issue.  While he supported fluoridation, he suggested that if the board was having second thoughts about proceeding with its prior approval to install a new fluoridation system, the issue should  be discussed at the board level.  

 

Once Courtesy was closed, several board members addressed the issue. Councilman Lachterman said that the board should listen to the public and possibly poll the public whether it wants to proceeds; he said he has done a poll. He said he didn’t mean to open a “pandora’s box” but that  fluoridation “shouldn’t be pushed down people’s throats” and that the board didn’t have to proceed with the project despite its earlier votes in 2018 to do so. He has asked for the issue to be put on the April 9 work session agenda.

 

Supervisr Gilbert said he believed the issue had been settled and that unless he was made aware of any overwhelming changes, he didn’t see a reason to change course, but added that he has an open mind.

 

Councilman Roker noted that the original hearing on whether to proceed with fluoridation was held in 2013 and that perhaps the board should hold a new hearing.

 

Councilman Patel supported fluoridation and Councilman Diana was silent on the issue.


Town Board, 12-18-2018

In an item not on the agenda, and as a follow up to a discussion during the budget hearing, the board passed a resolution to set up a capital projects line in the Water District Fund and transfer $209,000 from the district’s fund balance to pay for the consultant hired to design the system. Supervisor Gilbert said that he was glad to be able to move forward with the project using a state grant and without jeopardizing any other town funds.  He added that after some additional discussions, he now understood that adding fluoride to the water was important for seniors and not just young children.  Town Engineer Quinn advised the board that actual construction would “be a few months down the road.”   

 



Town Board, 12-4-2018

(For updates, see Town Board 6-5-2018 and 7-17-2018.) Susan Siegel asked about the status of the long delayed installation of a new fluoridation system for the Catskill water supply and the $901,000 state grant the town received for the project. While the 5 year Capital Plan listed $700,000 for the project and there was $700,000 in the water district’s “special projects” budget line, she asked the board for a commitment to get the project done in 2019. In response, Supervisor Gilbert said that there might be other more important water district projects, like cement lining water pipes in certain neighborhoods,  and that adding fluoride wouldn’t make a difference if the pipes couldn’t deliver safe water.  He also pointed to limited funds available in the district’s fund balance.  When Ms. Siegel suggested the board consider raising the water usage fee, Supervisor Gilbert said the board was looking into that and Water Superintendent Ken Rundle said that Yorktown’s water usage fee was in the middle range of fees for 15 other towns.

 


Town Board, 7-17-2018

The board authorized the supervisor to sign an agreement with Arcadis of New York in the amount of $209,000 to design a new fluoridation system for the town’s Catskill water supply.


 

Town Board, 6-4-2018

Town Engineer Michael Quinn announced that the town has received a state grant of $901,000 that will cover the full cost for the design and construction of a fluoridation system at the Catskill facility of the Northern Westchester Joint Water Works. The town will have up to 18 months to complete the project. The next step will be issuing an RFP to design the project with advertising for bids in early 2019 and construction to begin in April, 2019.  While the  facility will be operated and maintained by the NWJWW, it will only serve the Yorktown distribution system. Supervisor Gilbert noted that by a local law Yorktown is required to fluoridate its water.