The Portland City Council votes Wednesday on whether to add fluoride to drinking water to fight tooth decay.
Portland is the largest U.S. city without fluoridation. Medical experts say it’s a safe and effective way to keep teeth healthy.
Opponents dispute whether fluoride is safe and say adding the mineral to drinking water violates a person’s right to consent to medication.
The ordinance calls for Portland’s water to be fluoridated by March 2014 at a projected upfront cost of $5 million. Mayor Sam Adams and two city commissioners have announced their support, ensuring a majority on the five-member council.