YORKTOWN, N.Y. - A $19,444 grant was awarded to Yorktown by the state Department of Health to see whether it is feasible to build a town-operated fluoride system for water supplied by the Catskill Aqueduct. Currently, the Amawalk Water Treatment Plant fluoridates its water on-site. That facility supplies water to eastern Yorktown and Somers. Residents on the west side of Yorktown and Cortlandt receive their water from the Catskill Aqueduct. The Catskill supply at one time had a fluoride feed system that was taken off-line in 2013 because it needed repair.
Because other municipalities that belong to the Northern Westchester Joint Water Works (NWJWW) do not want their water fluoridated and receive water from the same supply, a separate feed system would have to be built further down the supply line for Yorktown to fluoridate its water. Town engineer Michael Quinn said the study would likely be conducted in January and that he believes the project is feasible.
“Our water personnel are very well-versed in using, testing and overseeing a system operation, so for us to oversee and maintain a fluoride addition is well within our capability,” Quinn said. “We won’t need to get new staff, we won’t need new training; we already have the in-house expertise to do it.” The study, Quinn said, will include a cost estimate for the work. If the town board moves forward, he said, it would apply for additional funding.
Matthew Geho, operations director at NWJWW, said the residents of the other towns do not want fluoride in their water. He predicts more municipalities will end to fluoridation and that it has become a point of contention in recent years. Many people feel that fluoride is abundant outside the water supply, he said.