CASSADAGA - The village board is scheduled to vote on the fluoridation of water at tonight's board meeting which will be held at 7 p.m. in the village offices.
The issue has sparked controversy in this community and in neighboring Lily Dale which currently depends on Cassadaga for its water. Opponents of fluoride have been very vocal both at the informational meeting held by the village board as well as at the board's most recent meeting. Some of the pro-fluoride people have been reluctant to speak out and be confronted by anti-fluoride sentiment.
The village board sent out postcards to water customers asking for an opinion so it could assess the entire area's opinion on the subject. A person or group has also distributed anti-fluoride fliers. Those fliers assert that Cassadaga plans to add fluoride to the water. The Facebook page listed on the flier does not exist.
OBSERVER Photo by Diane R. Chodan
The Cassadaga Post Office has received complaints of anti-fluoride fliers put into mailboxes. Without postage, this action is illegal, but in the first instance the mailer is asked to stop rather than face prosecution.
This person or group has violated the law in the distribution of the message. Fliers were found in area mailboxes. Sue Bigler, the officer in charge at the Cassadaga Post Office, confirmed that several people brought the fliers into the post office. Beyond confirming this, she could not comment directly on the situation. She provided a phone number for Karen Masurkiewicz for further information.
Masurkiewicz, who works in Buffalo, is a spokesperson for the United State Postal Service in Western New York. She said that mailboxes are only to be used for United States mail. She gave two reasons for this stance: security and revenue assurance.
"Generally," she said, "customers will bring fliers or other non-mail items to the post office. In that case, the post office will reach out to the 'mailer' and give them an opportunity to stop."
She explained that often a person doesn't realize that a law is being violated.
If the mailer continues, the post office will request or collect postage. Only when this fails to stop the action, will further action be taken.
Masurkiewicz advises anyone who finds a non-mail item in an official mailbox to take the item to the post office.
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