NY State Back-Doors Fluoridation to Avoid Public Notice

Bureaucrats usurped local legislators authority to stop fluoridation by slipping legislation into the Governor's budget which passed into law last year. This new law makes it difficult for legislators to stop fluoridation without bureaucratic intervention. Before that legislatures  were free to make the decision alone, preferably with constituent input.

Powerful, rich and highly political private organizations were at the forefront of promoting this new legislation taking power away from New Yorkers, as if we don't know what's best for us. 

In the 1990's, the Suffolk County (NY) Health Commissioner mandated fluoridation without the legislature's or the public's knowledge. Residents rebelled and fluoridation was eventually rejected.  

This prompted a New York State Law dubbed the "Home Rule Bill" (Public Health Law 1100-a) which would take fluoridation decisions out of the hands of non-elected officials to allow legislators to make fluoridation judgments with input from local residents.

Spearheaded by the New York State Coalition Opposed to Fluoridation (NYSCOF) and using the legislative process, the Home Rule bill was created and then lobbied for by fluoridation opponents across the state which became law in1996. It was the only law of its kind in the US.

The opposition notified their supporters to do the same.  Letters were written by both sides of the issue. and can be seen here in the NYS archives

This 1996 law was an inconvenient stumbling block for the bureaucrats at the NYS DoH and private organizations who want to force fluoride into New Yorkers when they don't want it.

So the Home Rule Bill was replaced by the "Healthy Teeth Amendment" which  was not independently voted on but was buried in the Governor's budget along with millions of dollars offered for  fluoridation that was coming from money earmarked for the poor - Medicaid. The public was never notified.

The Healthy Teeth Amendment, signed into law in 2015, is intended to usurp elected officials’ power to stop fluoridation, even when constituents demand it. Instead, the new law puts  power into the hands of non-elected pro-fluoridation bureaucrats to thwart fluoridation cessation. It requires public notice when fluoridation will be stopped (but not started), a list of alternatives to fluoridation, consultation with health professionals and the State Department of Health which must be given 90 days written notice “of the intent to discontinue and submit a plan for discontinuance” This Healthy Teeth Amendment is a model for the country. The verbatim law is below**

The first inkling that NYS DoH planned to replace NYSCOF's "Home Rule Bill" with the "Healthy Teeth Amendment" was when the following was published on the iLikeMyTeeth website in 2011.

   " It is obvious that Public Law 1100-a must be revised by the New York State legislature in the near future..."

The iLikeMyTeeth website was  first registered by the PR Company Salter/Mitchell Inc. -  A company that brags it's "The national behavior-change marketing firm"

Further, private organizations used their power and money to stealthily  lobby for the new law and fluoridation grants without any concern for public opinion.

According to Pew's Fluoridation Advocacy Report, "Pew successfully advised the Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy (SCAA) on legislative options for preserving and expanding community water fluoridation. SCAA drafted
language—known as the Healthy Teeth Amendment—that was included in the New York state budget and passed by the legislature on March 31, 2015. 

'Pew also worked with SCAA to expand the New York State Oral Health Coalition’s membership and engagement. Pew developed a campaign plan that included communications strategy, objectives, timelines, and anticipated obstacles, as well as providing a compendium of materials, including a series of issue briefs outlining the state’s oral health challenges and the effectiveness of several prevention
strategies. Pew provided New York organizations with training in social media, media relations and developing messaging around community water fluoridation."

Those who oppose fluoridation work on a shoestring budget and are mostly volunteers but are powerful because the truth is on our side. Pro-fluoridation is all smoke and mirrors.

NYS communities which have stopped or rejected fluoridation include:   Suffolk, Nassau & Rockland counties, Albany, Elba, Naples, Levittown, Canton, Corning, Johnstown, Oneida, Carle Place, Beacon, Poughkeepsie, Riverhead, Central Bridge Water District, Homer, Ithaca, Rouses Point, Pulaski, Romulus and Amsterdam.

Last year (2015), Dr. Jay Kumar, former Director of Dental Health in NY, identified these communities which are targets for fluoridation:

Albany County: City of Albany

Broome County: Johnson City Water Works

Cortland County: Cortland

Dutchess County: Poughkeepsie

Nassau County: All of county

Rockland County: All of county

Suffolk County: All of county

Tompkins County: Ithaca

Tompkins County: Cornell University

Warren County: Queensbury Water District


** New York State Public Health Law § 1100-A (2015)

1100-a. Fluoridation. 1. Notwithstanding any contrary provision of law, rule, regulation or code, any county, city, town or village that owns both its public water system and the water supply for such system may by local law provide whether a fluoride compound shall be added to such public water supply.
2. Any county, wherein a public authority owns both its public water system and the water supply for such system, may by local law provide whether a fluoride compound shall be added to such public water supply.
3. No county, city, town or village, including a county wherein a public authority owns both its public water system and the water supply for such system, that fluoridates a public water supply or causes a public water supply to be fluoridated, shall discontinue the addition of a fluoride compound to such public water supply unless it has first complied with the following requirements:
(a) issue a notice to the public of the preliminary determination to discontinue fluoridation for comment, which shall include the justification for the proposed discontinuance, alternatives to fluoridation available, and a summary of consultations with health professionals and the department concerning the proposed discontinuance. Such notice may, but is not required to, include publication in local newspapers. “Consultations with health professionals” may include formal studies by hired professionals, informal consultations with local public health officials or other health professionals, or other consultations, provided that the nature of such consultations and the identity of such professionals shall be identified in the public notice. “Alternatives to fluoridation” may include formal alternatives provided by or at the expense of the county, city, town or village, or other alternatives available to the public. Any public comments received in response to such notice shall be addressed by the county, city, town or village in the ordinary course of business; and
(b) provide the department at least ninety days prior written notice of the intent to discontinue and submit a plan for discontinuance that includes but is not limited to the notice that will be provided to the public, consistent with paragraph (a) of this subdivision, of the determination to discontinue fluoridation of the water supply, including the date of such discontinuance and alternatives to fluoridation, if any, that will be made available in the community, and that includes information as may be required under the Sanitary Code.
4. The commissioner is hereby authorized, within amounts appropriated therefor, to make grants to counties, cities, towns or villages that own their public water system and the water supply for such system, including a county wherein a public authority owns both its public water system and the water supply for such system, for the purpose of providing assistance towards the costs of installation, including but not limited to technical and administrative costs associated with planning, design and construction, and start-up of fluoridation systems, and replacing, repairing or upgrading of fluoridation equipment for such public water systems. Grant funding shall not be available for assistance towards the costs and expenses of operation of the fluoridation system, as determined by the department. The grant applications shall include such information as required by the commissioner. In making the grant awards, the commissioner shall consider the demonstrated need for installation of new fluoridation equipment or replacing, repairing or upgrading of existing fluoridation equipment, and such other criteria as determined by the commissioner. Grant awards shall be made on a competitive basis and be subject to such conditions as may be determined by the commissioner.
Online at Justia US Law

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