Buda to resume putting fluoride in water

Buda city council members vote to resume adding fluoride in water. (KXAN Photo/Lauren Lanmon)

BUDA, Texas (KXAN) – In the coming weeks, the city of Buda will resume putting fluoride in the city’s water supply. Buda’s water has been fluoridated since the city became a Guadalupe Blanco River Authority customer in 2002, but that changed late last year.

Buda receives their water from the San Marcos treatment plant; when the city of San Marcos voted to remove fluoride from their water in November 2015, the fluoride in Buda’s water was also removed. Since 2015, Buda has worked with the Texas Fluoridation program (TFP) to design and install a fluoridation system to reintroduce fluoride into their water.

The city says the new TFP system will adjust the fluoride level of the city’s purchased surface water to a level of 0.7 milligrams per liter.

“That is the optimum level recommended by the Federal Department of Health and Human Services for reducing the occurrence of dental cavities,” said Buda Public Information Officer David Marino.

At Buda’s last city council meeting, Councilman David Nuckles requested to see a presentation of the city’s plan to put fluoride in the water. After public comment of only one person speaking against the city’s decision, council voted to table the agenda item indefinitely, which allows for the process of adding fluoride to the water to move forward.

“It will not come before the council again unless three council members bring the issue back,” said Marino.

Sam Brannon, the organizer of the Fluoride Free San Marcos Coalition made the drive to Buda to speak out against the city’s decision.

“I was raised thinking fluoride was good,” said San Marcos resident Sam Brannon in front of Buda’s city council members. “But then some friends put some papers in my hand and we developed a study group to look at it and we decided that it was not in our best interest to be fluoridated.”

Brannon says he was asked by a Buda resident to speak to the council. He believe that fluoride does more harm than good and that residents should have a choice on what’s added to their water.

“We should have the option that if we want to take drugs and if we want to take medicine, we should have the option to say yes or no, and that’s part of medical ethics,” said Brannon.

The city says they will begin adding fluoride to the city’s water int he coming weeks. The new TFP system will be paid out of the city’s operating budget.