PEVELY, Mo. (KMOV) -- At a time when most local governments are scaling back, one city is making a budget cut we never anticipated. The city of Pevely is making a change to its water supply despite objections from health officials; deciding to stop adding fluoride to the city water system.
Pevely officials say this is one of many cuts the city has and will make in order to save money. Pevely ran out of fluoride to add to its water system in May and isn’t buying more.
Adding fluoride to the water costs Pevely about $150,000 a year. Mayor John Knobloch says it came down to cutting fluoride or cutting jobs.
“We looked at every option there possibly is and the option of cutting jobs wasn’t there,” he said. “Even with keeping the people we’ve got we’re just scraping by right now.”
The decision is expected to save $8,000 to $10,000, but is already being protested by dentists and the Jefferson County Health Department.
When orthodontist Kate Barnette heard the city would stop adding fluoride to its water system to save money, she took offense.
“We really like to see everybody have the opportunity to have fluoride. It makes the tooth so much stronger. Especially for the growing population, kids, all that stuff,” she said.
Knobloch hopes the fluoride program can return again in the future.