Iowa City residents will continue to drink fluoride along with their tap water.
After considering concerns raised by some residents, City Council members said at this evening’s work session they’ve found no reason to drop the practice.
“Not seeing in my mind enough significant statistical data to imply harm, I’m not prepared” to end the practice, Councilmember Sue Mims said.
The council has heard from some residents, including University of Iowa faculty, in recent weeks questioning the effectiveness and even the safety of adding fluoride to city water. But council members agreed subsequent research hasn’t convinced them.
The only speaker on the issue tonight was Ed Moreno, the city’s water superintendent, who said experts he’d consulted at the UI and elsewhere agreed fluoride’s benefits to dental health outweighed any health worries,
“It probably is good to take a look at it, because if nothing else we know more about it,” said Mike Wright. “But I’m not seeing any consistent data” against fluoridation.
“We are causing people who drink tap water to ingest a particular substance, (but) this is a general public good and a responsible thing to be doing,” said Regenia Bailey.
“There are options if one is concerned about adjusting this” such as bottled water, Bailey noted. “That’s the balanced interest I always try to look for.”
“As the council has a long agenda tonight, I suggest we move on,” said Mims, and the council did.
With the City Council set to adopt a 21-and-over restriction Tuesday, April 6, 2010, on Iowa City bars, police are preparing to step up patrols as problem drinking to shifts to neighborhoods.
“We probably will see more house parties initially but it will probably level off at some point,” Police Chief Sam Hargadine told council members.
Hargadine said University of Iowa officials are ready to follow any city citations with their own sanctions.
“They wanted to know more about conduct of their students off campus,” he said.
Capt. Matt Johnson said neighborhoods will see more patrols as student drinkers move away from downtown bars. And hosts of noisy parties will be more likely to see citations rather than warnings.
“That has not entirely gone away but I think it’s our mission to see that go,” Johnson said of warnings. “Neighborhoods are generally dissatisfied” at return police visits and chronic trouble spots, so “that’s a direction the neighborhoods expect us to go to.”
Renters cited for keeping a disorderly house face a fine of up to $500. Second violations mean a meeting with police and city housing officials for the property’s renter and landlord, a process Johnson called “incredibly effective so far.”
After the restriction takes effect, “we don’t know the dynamic downtown, how it will be, and we don’t know the dynamic in the neighborhoods,” Johnson said. But police will encourage residents to report noisy parties, and follow up on repeat offenders.
“I think all of us are realistic in that we expect we’re going to see a spike” in house-party drinking, Sue Mims said, “and we’re going to have to go out and address those.”