Schneiderman, crematory reach emissions agreement

Bryan Cohen Jul. 25, 2012, 3:17pm


BUFFALO, N.Y. (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced an agreement on Wednesday with the operator of a Tonawanda-based funeral home crematory to stop odor, particles, smoke and other emissions.

Under the terms of the agreement, Sheridan Park Inc., the operator of the Amigone Funeral Home crematory, must cease operations for six months and attempt to solve emissions problems that have been the source of community complaints. Schneiderman reserves the right to take legal action if the emissions problems are not solved.

"For years, emissions from the Amigone Funeral Home's crematory have been the source of complaints in the Tonawanda community," Schneiderman said.

"This agreement is a victory for the families who deserve a neighborhood that is free from offensive odors, smoke and soot. I am pleased that the operators of the Amigone crematory have agreed to halt its crematory operations and focus on finding a solution to the emissions that disrupted the lives of dozens of nearby families."

As part of the agreement, Sheridan Park must pursue the relocation of its crematory operations to a more suitable site, including securing any compulsory local or state approval processes. If approval is not granted, the corporation must hire an expert to evaluate the crematory operations and make recommendations to the state on solutions to resolve the concerns of the community.

The Amigone crematory started operations in August 1991 and is located in the midst of a densely populated neighborhood in Tonawanda, Erie County.

Sheridan has implemented multiple engineering and operational changes to respond to smoke, soot, odor and other emission issues since opening. Despite the changes, residents in the neighborhood continue to complain that emissions from the crematory's operations disrupt enjoyment of their property and disrupt routine activities such as walking, gardening and holding backyard family gatherings.

As part of the agreement, Schneiderman retains the right to take legal action if the emissions problem has not been solved, including if the state determines that the recommendations from the technical expert will not stop the emissions.

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