LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – An Arkansas Water Authority is ready to fight a circuit court ruling that requires it to add fluoride to its drinking water.
The Ozark Mountain Public Regional Water Authority filed an appeal against the Arkansas Department of Health but lost.
Chrystal Blair has reaction from those at the center of the case in the video above.
Under the current law, if a water supplier serves at least 5,000 customers in a consecutive system, they must add fluoride to their drinking water.
“We have 18 customers — and none of our 18 customers serves 5000 people.”
But this is where it gets tricky, Andy Anderson, Chairman of the Ozark Mountain Regional Public Water Authority near Lead Hill says they are a wholesale supplier and
“You could say that that first system is consecutive to us. He doesn’t serve 5-thousand people. So we do not feel that it should apply to us,” he said.
But a circuit court judge disagrees and ruled the water authority has a total of 21,000 customers and the fluoride must be added.
“We do not feel that should apply to us and the people you talk to on the street don’t feel like it should apply to us.”
At the core of the dispute is how many customers are involved and how the system actually works.
“We are like the overhead powerline that runs across the country the high voltage line. The pipeline runs the system taps into it and gets their water. We don’t go from point..from system A, to sytem B, to system C, to system D. They all tap into our line so they’re not consecutive.”
And according to Anderson, the customers are not taking this lightly.
“Our customers do not want it. We have many letters from customers say if you put it in we’re not going to pay the bill.”
“I suspect we will appeal it since all of our customers are opposed.”