SALT LAKE CITY -- A Davis County-driven bill to force suppliers to verify the quality of products used to fluoridate the county water system has cleared a Senate committee the second time around.
HB 72 received a favorable recommendation Thursday morning on a 4-1 vote, sending the measure to the Senate for further consideration. Ironically, Sen. Allen Christensen, R-North Ogden, initiated the motion, calling it "a leap of faith." It was Christensen who was critical of the bill in its first review, suggesting it was purely anti-fluoridation and was a solution looking for a problem.
Bill sponsor Rep. Roger Barrus, R-Centerville, said the bill is not about fluoridation and is a mechanism to provide a paper trail of documentation for the quality of things put into the water system. He said the bill would force manufacturers to provide one-time documentation that they are compliant with federal standards and would also require each batch of chemicals to be accompanied by a batch analysis.
Dubbed the Safe Water Disclosure Act, the legislation was run at the request Davis County Attorney Troy Rawlings after he was unable to get all of the documentation from a chemical supplier showing it meets federal guidelines. Middle men in the delivery process claim they meet the guidelines, but have not provided that documentation, Barrus said.
Paul Ashton, general manager of the White City Water Improvement District, said he gets calls all the time from people wanting to know what is being injected into the fluoridated water. Ashton, an attorney, understands why companies are reluctant to provide that documentation.
"As an attorney, I wouldn't advise my company to give up any documents. It's unfortunate in today's world -- you can't do any kind of business without an eye on the lawyers. They are either there to protect you or to sue you," Ashton said.
Sen. Peter Knudson,
R-Brigham City, voted against passing the bill out of committee.
"I'm a dentist, and as I see your efforts here, it appears to be another effort of anti-
fluoridation. I don't think this is necessary," Knudson said.