Fluoride

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The Santa Clara Valley Water District (District) manages an integrated water resources system that includes drinking water, flood protection, and stewardship of streams in Santa Clara County. The District provides wholesale water to water retailers that include local municipalities and water utilities, like San Jose Water Company, who then delivers drinking water directly to homes and businesses throughout the County.

The District will be fluoridating the water supply at its three water treatment plants. Water fluoridation is simply a process in which naturally occurring fluoride levels in drinking water are adjusted to an optimal level recommended by the U.S. Public Health Service of 0.7 mg/L (parts per million) for the prevention of tooth decay.

The District’s fluoridation efforts will take many years to complete and will occur in phases. We anticipate delivering fluoridated water in 2017 and customers will either receive optimal fluoride levels or suboptimal fluoride levels depending on their location in SJWC’s service area. SJWC will provide a map of its service area showing the expected fluoride levels prior to the District’s fluoridation implementation. The District is expected to complete its fluoridation implementation in 2020.

For 150 years, SJWC has provided exceptional customer service and maintained an exemplary water quality compliance record. The Company has historically maintained a neutral position on water fluoridation. Our primary goal is to provide water that meets or exceeds all applicable federal and state water quality regulations. SJWC’s own sources of supply from its wells and surface water from the Santa Cruz Mountains contain low levels of naturally occurring fluoride. Please refer to the Consumer Confidence Report form more information (www.sjwater.com/ccr).

California law (Assembly Bill 733) requires that water systems with more than 10,000 connections fluoridate their supply only if funding for capital and ongoing operation and maintenance of the system is provided by a source other than the utility or its customers. The Santa Clara County Public Health Officer, the Health Trust, and the California Dental Association have approached SJWC to express the need to fluoridate SJWC’s water supply and indicated a willingness to seek the necessary funding to fluoridate our water supply. We are working with these public health entities to evaluate the regulatory, operational, financial, and technical challenges associated with fluoridating a large, technically complex urban water system. As required and to comply with all drinking water laws and regulations, SJWC will fluoridate the water supply if the necessary outside funding is provided.

SJWC will continue to collaborate with the Health Trust and other organizations on this issue and provide more information to customers as it becomes available. Additional resources on fluoridation are available below. For questions regarding dental health, including information on fluoride supplements, please consult your dental care provider.