LEGISLATIVE changes made by the State Government will restore local control of fluoride management across Queensland, 18 months after it was introduced into Warwick supplies.
Health Minister and Southern Downs MP Lawrence Springborg said months of debate about the state-wide rollout of fluoride treatment had convinced the government to re-establish a role for local authorities in the decision-making process.
The change, revealed in legislation presented to parliament yesterday, means communities still considering options for fluoride treatment will decide for themselves if and when to proceed.
"The government is convinced by the strong advice of health authorities that endorse fluoride treatment," Mr Springborg said.
"Eighty-seven per cent of Queenslanders have fluoride included in their local water.
"However, while we continue to advocate for the inclusion of fluoride, we retain a strong philosophical commitment to local decision-making.
"Across this state, water is the responsibility of local authorities and they will no longer be sidelined in this debate."
Mr Springborg said the legislative requirement for fluoridisation implemented by the former government would end under the South East Queensland Water (Restructuring) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2012.
"Until 2014, the LNP will continue to provide funding for fluoride infrastructure where councils request it," he said.