Project to add fluoride to East San Jose drinking water gains approval

In the latest step toward the effort by dentists and health officials to end San Jose’s status as the largest city in America without fluoride in its drinking water, Santa Clara County has contributed $1 million to add fluoride for the first time to drinking water from wells operated by the San Jose Water Company.
On Tuesday, the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors voted 5-0 to spend $1,027,713 from the county general fund to help install fluoridation equipment on six new wells being constructed by San Jose Water Company for customers of East San Jose.
The Health Trust will contribute $694,757 toward the $1.7 million project — $180,900 came from the city of San Jose.
Hansen said the Health Trust will continue raising money to expand fluoride to other wells in the years ahead, a strategy supported by Santa Clara County Health Officer Sara Cody, the California Dental Association, Silicon Valley Leadership Group and others.
Overall, San Jose Water has 108 wells at 27 locations in Santa Clara County, and the six wells at the new site at McLaughlin Avenue will be the first to have fluoride added.
Studies by the Health Trust have concluded it would cost $23 million to connect fluoridation equipment to all 108 wells owned by San Jose Water, or $12 million for all the wells serving East San Jose.
Santa Clara County has set aside $4 million for fluoridation projects.
In 1964, San Jose voters approved adding fluoride to city water by a 59-41 percent margin.
Fluoridation advocates won a major victory in 2011 when the Santa Clara Valley Water District, the county’s water wholesaler, voted to add fluoride at its three drinking water treatment plants.
But people who receive groundwater from San Jose Water company have not had fluoride.

Learn More