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A decision on adding fluoride in Ranfurly's water supply will be delayed for up to 14 years.
The Central Otago District Council agreed yesterday to put the issue on the ''back burner'' until after it meets national drinking water standards.
The Maniototo Community Board voted in 2011 to add fluoride to the Ranfurly water supply and three years later, the board agreed to seek more feedback and information on the issue.
The council, rather than community boards, now has responsibility for decisions about the district's water supplies, so the matter was on the agenda at yesterday's meeting.
''I think this is a talk that should be had at national level, not community level, but we're not here to debate the merits or otherwise of fluoride, so let's put it on the back burner,'' Cr Martin McPherson said.
Cr Stu Duncan said the Maniototo board had voted on the matter then revisited it and delayed making a decision.
Council water services manager Russell Bond said meeting the drinking water standards should take priority and the council agreed to delay making a decision until the supply has been upgraded.
That process could take up to 14 years.