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Amigone to relocate Tonawanda crematory


Tue, Oct 26th 2021 12:30 pm

Legislation allows crematory operated by Amigone Funeral Home to move away from residential neighborhood

On Tuesday, New York State Sen. Sean Ryan and Assemblyman Bill Conrad announced their legislation (S.6171B/A.6740), which will allow Amigone Funeral Home to relocate its Sheridan Park crematory to a nonresidential area approved by the Town of Tonawanda, was signed into law by Gov. Kathy Hochul.

The legislation allows the relocation of the Tonawanda facility pending the approval of local authorities, and provided relocation is within the Town of Tonawanda. It amends state law that prohibits the construction of new combination funeral home-crematories, and the relocation of those that opened prior to the establishment of that law.

Ryan’s team stated, “The controversial crematory, which was closed from 2012 to 2018 for violating state clean air laws, was again shut down for four months after its pollution control system failed in September 2020, releasing black smoke into their air for more than an hour. In January, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation allowed Amigone Funeral Home to resume operations at the crematory.”

Ryan said, “With the passage of this legislation, the path has been cleared for Amigone to do the right thing for Town of Tonawanda residents and relocate their crematory into a nonresidential neighborhood. This solution will deliver clean air for the people of Tonawanda while allowing a local business to continue operating under its current business model. It is the culmination of years of activism from Tonawanda residents, and it was made possible by tireless advocacy from their local elected officials. I thank Gov. Hochul for signing the bill into law, and I look forward to the town and the Amigone family working together to finally come to a resolution that suits all parties.”

Conrad said, “I want to thank Gov. Hochul for signing this bill into law, and I am hopeful the Amigone family will work with the Town of Tonawanda to find a new location for the crematory. Our neighbors deserve breathable air that's free of nuisance odors and emissions. Without this bill's passage, a longstanding state law – along with Amigone's grandfathered status under that law – would have kept the crematory in place, literally in the backyards of private homes. I was pleased to help facilitate a solution that promises to restore residents' quality of life while giving a longstanding business in the town the opportunity to move to an area better suited to its operations.”

Tonawanda Town Supervisor Joe Emminger said, “This piece of legislation is exactly the reason why the people you put in local and state government matter. For over 10 years, the Town Board has fought on behalf of the residents to get to where we are today. But it took our state elected officials – Sen. Sean Ryan and Assemblyman Bill Conrad – to push it across the finish line. I want to thank the two of them, along with Gov. Kathy Hochul, for listening to the needs, concerns and wants of the Town of Tonawanda.”

Tonawanda Town Councilwoman Shannon Patch said, “Today we are witnessing activism in action. This is what we can accomplish when a group of residents stands together and says, 'This is not OK in our community!' I am thrilled that Gov. Hochul has signed this important legislation, which will give Amigone the ability to move to a more appropriate location in our town. And I am, as always, grateful for our state representatives, Assemblyman Conrad and Sen. Ryan, who consistently and continually show up and go to bat for Tonawanda!”

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