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EPA Denies Anti-Fluoride Petition

The EPA rejected a petition in August 2013 seeking to ban a form of fluoride that is commonly used to fluoridate drinking water, noting that petitioners lacked “sufficient facts” to support their case.

Tennessee Law Requires Public Notice

A Tennessee law enacted in 2012 requires local water systems to provide a minimum period of public notification before ceasing or starting fluoridation.

Turner v. Barnhardt

Case Name: 
Turner v. Barnhardt
Plaintiff: 
Harold L. Turner
Defendant: 
Charles E. Barnhart
Other Parties: 
New Mexico Citizens for Fluoridation
Citation: 

83 N.M. 759; 497 P.2d 970 (N.M. 1972)

Year: 
1972
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of New Mexico
Abstract: 

Plaintiffs brought an action seeking a declaratory judgment and an injunction enjoining the City of Albuquerque from fluoridating the public water supply after city voters adopted an ordinance in favor of fluoridation. The trial court granted summary judgment for defendants, and plaintiffs appealed on the grounds that: (1) there were material issues of fact; (2) the City improperly held a general election at the same time as a municipal election; and (3) the full text of the ordinance was not placed on the ballot. The court rejected all of plaintiffs’ arguments and affirmed the trial court’s decision.

State: 
Opinion Judges: 
McManus

Young v. Board of Health of Borough of Somerville

Case Name: 
Young v. Board of Health of Borough of Somerville
Plaintiff: 
Raymond A. Young et al.
Defendant: 
The Board of Health of the Borough of Somerville, et al.
Citation: 

61 N.J. 76; 293 A.2d 164 (N.J. 1972)

Year: 
1972
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of New Jersey
Abstract: 

Plaintiffs brought an action against a group of local boards of health seeking injunctive relief from recently adopted resolutions requesting fluoridation of the public water supply and an adjudication that the resolutions were invalid. Plaintiffs argued that the local boards of health lacked authority to adopt the resolutions requesting fluoridation and were bound to act by ordinance rather than by resolution. The court rejected both arguments and affirmed the trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of defendants

State: 

Balke v. City of Manchester

Case Name: 
Balke v. City of Manchester
Plaintiff: 
June Balke
Defendant: 
City of Manchester
Citation: 

150 N.H. 69; 834 A.2d 306 (N.H. 2003)

Year: 
2003
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of New Hampshire
Abstract: 

New Hampshire state law provided that fluorine shall not be introduced into any water system until the municipality using the water system has held a public hearing as to the introduction of fluorine into the public water supply and the voters of the municipality have approved such action. Defendant City of Manchester operated the Manchester Water Works (MWW), which provided water service to customers in the city as well as outside the city limits. Following a public hearing conducted by the city pursuant to state law, a vote was held in favor of adding fluoride to the water supply. No similar public hearings or referendums were held in any of the other towns serviced by MWW, although MWW did notify town officials of its plans to fluoridate the water. Plaintiffs filed a petition for a declaratory judgment, injunctive relief, and damages in the lower court, arguing that the city had violated state law by fluoridating its water supply prior to conducting public hearings and obtaining voter approval in each municipality that MWW served. The Supreme Court of New Hampshire held that the plain language of the statute required a referendum vote in every municipality in which a resident received water from the water system. The court affirmed the trial court’s judgment ordering the city to cease fluoridation by a certain date unless a legislative remedy was enacted or the surrounding towns voted to approve fluoridation.

Case Tags: 
Opinion Judges: 
Nadeau J
Attach File: 

Stroupe v. Eller

Case Name: 
Stroupe v. Eller
Plaintiff: 
Nell Stroupe, Frances K. McLaren, Pure Water Association
Defendant: 
Earl Eller, Frank Mulvaney, Clarence Morgan, Theodore Sumner, William Algary, Watler McRary, Ralph Morris, Weir, City Manager of Asheville, Asheville City Council, City of Asheville
Citation: 

262 N.C. 573; 138 S.E.2d 240 (N.C. 1964)

Year: 
1964
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of North Carolina
Abstract: 

Plaintiffs, officials of the Asheville and Buncombe County Branch of the Pure Water Association, brought an action seeking to restrain defendant city officials from enforcing an ordinance passed by the Asheville City Council to fluoridate the public water supply. The parties stipulated that, seven years prior to the adoption of the city council’s ordinance, a county-wide election on the question whether the city should introduce fluorides into the public drinking water supply had resulted in a negative vote. Plaintiffs argued that the prior adverse vote, although advisory, should have prevented the council from passing the resolution until the electors were given another opportunity to vote on the question. The parties also conceded that the city’s charter provided for a referendum election upon proper petition before any ordinance became effective. The court remanded the case to the trial court for it to be dismissed for failure to state a claim, but instructed this to be done only after plaintiffs had time to call for and obtain a referendum as provided in the city charter.

Opinion Judges: 
Higgins J
Attach File: 

State ex rel. Whittington v. Strahm

Case Name: 
State ex rel. Whittington v. Strahm
Plaintiff: 
William H. Whittington, Gale E. Lord, William Paul Hunter, Jean McCone
Defendant: 
Margaret Strahm
Citation: 

374 S.W.2d 127 (Mo. 1963)

Year: 
1963
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of Missouri
Abstract: 

Citizen brought a suit against the city to allow a referendum process. Court ruled in favor of the citizens.

State: 
Opinion Judges: 
Holman J

Readey v. St. Louis County Water Co.

Case Name: 
Readey v. St. Louis County Water Co.
Plaintiff: 
Readey, et al.
Defendant: 
St. Louis County Water Company, et al.
Citation: 

352 S.W.2d 622 (Mo. 1961)

Year: 
1961
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of Missouri Division 1
Abstract: 

Plaintiffs brought an action against the City Clerk of Kansas City to take certain action in regard to a referendum petition which defendant contended was improper. The referendum petition sought to refer a Kansas City ordinance on the fluoridation of water to the electors. Plaintiffs argued that the ordinance was referable under the city’s charter provision, while the city took the position that only legislative ordinances were referable, and that the ordinance in question was administrative and not subject to a referendum petition. The Missouri Supreme Court deferred the decision of whether administrative ordinances are referable, holding that the ordinance was legislative in nature because it legally introduced for the first time the practice of fluoridating the city’s water supply. The court remanded the case with directions to the trial court to issue a peremptory writ of mandamus.

State: 

Minnesota State Board of Health v. City of Brainerd

Case Name: 
Minnesota State Board of Health v. City of Brainerd
Plaintiff: 
Minnesota Board of Health
Defendant: 
City of Brainerd
Other Parties: 
Dr. Warren R. Lawson, Mayor of Brainerd, City Council of Brainerd, Water and Light Board
Citation: 

308 Minn. 24; 241 N.W.2d 624 (Minn. 1976)

Year: 
1976
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of Minnesota
Abstract: 

Appellant City of Brainerd, Minnesota, appealed the lower court’s peremptory writ of mandamus commanding the city to comply with a Minnesota state law requiring fluoridation of public water supplies. The city argued that the state law was an unconstitutional invasion of individual rights. The Supreme Court of Minnesota stated that to properly determine the constitutionality of fluoridation, it must consider: (1) the importance of the state's purpose for requiring fluoridation; (2) the nature and magnitude of the effect of forced fluoridation on the individual; (3) whether the state's purpose justified the intrusion of forced fluoridation; and (4) whether the means adopted by the state to accomplish its purpose was proper and reasonable. The court found that the state law satisfied this test and affirmed the trial court’s peremptory writ.

State: 
Opinion Judges: 
Laughlin M

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Recent State and Local Action

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Missouri :: Ordinance :: Sullivan

Abstract: 

Sullivan's City Council passed Ordiance 3667, eliminating the city's fluoridation requirement, repealing Sullivan Code 705.050. 

See also James B. Bartle, Fluoridation Repealed In Sullivan, Three Ordinances Approved, Sullivan Independent News (June 2, 2015), available at http://www.mysullivannews.com/2015/06/fluoridation-repealed-in-sullivan-....

 

Last updated: June 19, 2015.  

 

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Michigan :: Ordinance :: West Branch

Abstract: 

On June 1, 2015, West Branch City Counsel voted 6-1 to increase water fluoridation levels to the state and Federal recommended 0.7 ppm. See Matt Varcak, "City votes to increase level of fluoride in the water," Ogemaw County Herald (June 1, 2015), available at http://www.ogemawherald.com/stories/City-votes-to-increase-level-of-fluoride-in-water,101683.   

 

Last updated June 19, 2015.

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New York :: Administrative Code

Abstract: 

The additions to the New York Public Health Code prevent jurisdictions already participating in water fluoridation from ceasing their program without first providing a notice to the public and a ninety-day comment period.

Citation: 

NY PUB HEALTH § 1100–a

Date Adopted: 
Mon, 04/13/2015
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West Virginia :: Local Authority :: Clarksburg

Abstract: 

Clarksburg, WV has voted to take bids for all of its water treatment chemicals save for fluoride, essentially ending water fluoridation in the jurisdiction.  See http://wvmetronews.com/2015/05/11/clarksburg-water-board-votes-to-end-practice-of-fluoridation/.  The Water Board has decided to continue to discuss the issue even after not voting to fund any fluoride contracts. See http://www.theet.com/news/local/water-board-to-resume-discussions-about-fluoride/article_4000700a-30b8-5d34-a8db-bb29463c472c.html

Last Updated: May 19, 2015

Michigan :: Ogemaw County :: Consideration

Abstract: 

The West Branch (Michigan) city counsel will consider whether to add fluoride to its water supply in the near future.  See http://ogemawherald.com/stories/City-to-consider-adding-additional-fluor....

 

Last updated: April 10, 2015.  

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