TONAWANDA, N.Y. — A new piece of legislation that would allow the Amigone Funeral Home in the Town of Tonawanda to relocate its Sheridan Park Crematory has been passed by both the Senate and Assembly, and is now waiting for Gov. Andrew Cuomo's signature.
New York State Senator Sean Ryan and Assemblyman Bill Conrad made the announcement Tuesday. Under this legislation, the Amigone Funeral home would be able to relocate the crematory to a non-residential area, pending the approval of the town.
This legislation would amend New York State law, which prohibits "the construction of new combination funeral home-crematories, and the relocation of those that opened prior to the establishment of this law."
“With the passage of this bill in both houses, we’re close to providing a solution for Tonawanda residents, whose years of activism have led us to this moment," Ryan said. "Allowing Amigone to relocate their crematory to a non-residential neighborhood creates a rare win-win situation. The residents of the Town of Tonawanda get their neighborhood cleaned up and a local business gets to continue operating under its current business model.”
Tonawanda Town Supervisor Joe Emminger added, “The news today coming out of Albany is certainly very welcome. Moving the crematory out of that location is something that the Town Board has been working on with our state officials for over a decade, and while not the final chapter of the story, we are certainly encouraged. We want to thank Senator Ryan and Assemblyman Conrad for all their efforts on this very important piece of legislation for our community.”
The crematory on Sheridan Drive shut down in 2012 after years of complaints from neighbors. In 2014, the county blocked it from reopening. And in 2016, a judge said it could reopen, and the company worked with the state to meet new emission standards.
Then in September 2020, the pollution control system at the crematory failed, releasing black smoke into the air. The Amigone Funeral Home was later given the green light to resume operations at the crematory by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) back in January.