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Potratz v. Pennsylvania DEP

Case Name: 
Potratz v. Pennsylvania DEP
Plaintiff: 
James B. Potratz
Defendant: 
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection
Other Parties: 
Erie City Water Authority
Citation: 

897 A.2d 16 (Pa. Commw. Ct. 2006)

Year: 
2006
Court Name: 
Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania
Abstract: 

Plaintiff challenged the Erie City Water Authority’s construction permit for the modification of the public water supply on the grounds that the modification was to include fluoridation of the water supply. The Environmental Hearing Board granted defendants’ motion for partial summary judgment, and plaintiff appealed. Defendants argued that plaintiff should have raised his objections to fluoridation at the construction permit stage of the process and that he was precluded from raising his objections at this point. The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court agreed with defendants, holding that the matter was ripe for adjudication when the Authority was issued the construction permit and that plaintiff was precluded from collaterally attacking any issue that was or could have been raised when the construction permit was issued. The judgment of the Board was affirmed.

Case Tags: 
State: 
Opinion Judges: 
Flaherty J

Commonwealth Dept. of Environment Resources v. Bierman

Case Name: 
Commonwealth Dept. of Environment Resources v. Bierman
Plaintiff: 
Department of Environmental Resources
Defendant: 
Joseph Bierman, Emanuel Roth, Luther Bilheimer, Carol Zimmerman, Paulina Curtis, F. Murray Iobst
Citation: 

23 Pa. Commw. 646; 354 A.2d (Pa. Commw. Ct. 1976)

Year: 
1976
Court Name: 
Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania
Abstract: 

Plaintiffs appealed an adjudication by the Pennsylvania Environmental Hearing Board which dismissed plaintiffs’ objections to the issuance of a public water supply permit by the Department of Environmental Resources (DER) to the Allentown Water Authority. The permit allowed the Authority to provide for fluoridation of its water supply. According to plaintiffs, the Board’s findings that fluoridation was safe and effective in reducing cavities were not supported by substantial evidence. Plaintiffs also objected to the hearing examiner’s ruling that plaintiffs’ expert witness could not testify concerning the contents of many unnamed scientific articles on the subject of fluoridation and its effects on man. The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court rejected both arguments, finding that there was substantial evidence to support the hearing examiner’s conclusions and that the hearing examiner properly excluded the expert’s testimony concerning the contents of articles as hearsay (but properly allowed him to testify as to his expert opinion that the research done on fluoridation, taken as a whole, was not of sufficient quality and quantity to establish the safety or efficacy of fluoridation). The court affirmed the order of the Hearing Board.

State: 
Opinion Judges: 
Mencer

Commonwealth Dept. of Environment Resources v. City of Lebanon

Case Name: 
Commonwealth Dept. of Environment Resources v. City of Lebanon
Plaintiff: 
Department of Environmental Resources, Carroll E. Ditzler, et al.
Defendant: 
City of Lebanon
Year: 
1978
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of Pennsylvania
Abstract: 

Abstract: The City of Lebanon sought permission from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources (DER) to cease fluoridation of its water supply, and the DER denied the request. The city appealed, arguing the DER lacked the legal authority to compel the city to continue with fluoride treatment of its water supply. The city argued that in the alternative, if such authority did exist, the DER abused its discretion. The Supreme Court of Pennsylvania held that the DER’s power to protect public health included the power to compel the city to continue its fluoridation program and that it did not abuse its discretion in refusing to allow the city to cease fluoridating the municipal water supply.

State: 

Burt v. Blumenauer

Case Name: 
Burt v. Blumenauer
Plaintiff: 
Burt
Defendant: 
Blumenauer, et al.
Citation: 

65 Ore. App. 399; 672 P.2d 51 (Or. Ct. App. 1983)

Year: 
1983
Court Name: 
Court of Appeals of Oregon
Abstract: 

Plaintiff brought an action against county officials, contending that they violated an Oregon statute prohibiting public employees from promoting or opposing a ballot measure during working hours. Defendants argued that their actions were justified and mandated by the Oregon state statute authorizing the county department of health to conduct activities necessary for the preservation of or prevention of disease. The Oregon Court of Appeals rejected plaintiff’s argument, holding that the prohibition against public employees promoting or opposing a ballot measure was a specific provision that controls over a general one. The court reversed the trial court’s determination that the fluoridation information project was not political activity and remanded the case.

State: 
Attach File: 

Baer v. City of Bend

Case Name: 
Baer v. City of Bend
Plaintiff: 
Baer
Defendant: 
City of Bend
Citation: 

206 Ore. 221; 292 P.2d 134 (Or. 1956)

Year: 
1956
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of Oregon
Abstract: 

Plaintiff instituted an action against the City of Bend, seeking to enjoin the city from enforcing an ordinance for the introduction of inorganic fluoride chemicals into the water supply. According to plaintiff, the ordinance was an unconstitutional violation of due process, freedom of religion, and liberty rights secured by the United States and Oregon Constitutions. The Oregon Supreme Court rejected plaintiffs’ arguments on the grounds that the ordinance was a valid exercise of the city’s police powers, did not unreasonably invade liberty rights, and was remotely, if at all, related to religious practices or the authority of parents to rear their children.

State: 

Dowell v. City of Tulsa

Case Name: 
Dowell v. City of Tulsa
Plaintiff: 
Dowell
Defendant: 
City of Tulsa
Citation: 

273 P.2d 859; 43 A.L.R. 2d 445 (Okla. 1954)

Year: 
1954
Court Name: 
Supreme Court of Oklahoma
Abstract: 

Plaintiffs appealed trial court’s denial of an injunction prohibiting defendants from enforcing or complying with a local Tulsa ordinance authorizing the fluoridation of the city’s water supply. Plaintiffs argued that the ordinance: (1) was an unconstitutional exercise of police power, (2) was enacted in excess of the powers granted to the city by the Oklahoma legislature, (3) was an unconstitutional violation of the freedom of religion, and (4) violated a state law regulating the manufacture and sale of food to which fluorine compounds had been added. The Oklahoma Supreme Court rejected all of plaintiffs’ arguments, holding that the prevention of dental caries was within the city’s police power, and that the fluoridation measure was reasonably necessary to achieve this goal.

State: 
Opinion Judges: 
Blackbird

Yiamouyiannis v. Chemical Abstracts Service

Case Name: 
Yiamouyiannis v. Chemical Abstracts Service
Plaintiff: 
John Yiamouyiannis
Defendant: 
Chemical Abstracts Service, et al.
Citation: 

578 F.2d 164 (6th Cir. 1989)

Year: 
1978
Court Name: 
United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
Abstract: 

This case is relevant because plaintiff alleged wrongful firing due to his opposition to fluoridation. Plaintiff alleged that Chemical Abstracts Service was federally funded and that he was wrongfully discharged for his opposition to fluoridation. The Sixth Circuit determined that the fact that Congress chartered an organization otherwise private in character does not render the action of the officers of the organization state action, and denied plaintiff’s claim.

State: 

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