Friday, April 14, 2017

Just a reminder: Crematoriums are regulated by the Dept. of Health, not local governments.

Please note, to avoid any confusion: Crematoriums are in the City of Lake Worth because, at one point in our City’s history, there was nothing stopping crematoriums to operate a business in Lake Worth.

The zoning has been changed and crematoriums are not longer permissible under our zoning code.

However, crematoriums already in operation at the time were, “grand-fathered in”, meaning they can operate only as long as they continue to pay their tax bill, utility bill, etc., keeping up-to-date with the City in general. If the business fails to comply they will lose their business license.

I hope that helps to clear things up like other issues, e.g., the false claim uttered once again by a resident recently at a City Commission the City of Lake Worth is a “sanctuary city”. It’s not. Never was. Simply and categorically false.

Back to the issue of smoke coming from a crematorium, an article by Post reporter Julius Whigham:

The operators of the facility [Premier Funeral Services and Cremations, Inc.], at North Dixie Highway and Eighth Avenue North, were asked to provide the health department with a report about a malfunction at the crematory. Comments posted on on Facebook said that black smoke could be seen from outside the facility Wednesday afternoon.

and. . .

     “I’ve gone out there and pounded their door down,” he [City resident Michael Flack-Fox] said. “There’s something profoundly wrong when (the crematories) emit that much smoke. … It’s a public safety hazard.”

If you ever see smoke coming from a crematorium there are much better options than calling the press, or going on Facebook to complain, or even contacting your local elected officials and City staff to complain:

Contact the Palm Beach County, Florida, Dept. of Health, or call 561-840-4500.

Why contact the Dept. of Health? Because they regulate crematoriums and are responsible for inspections. Not local governments. The City of Lake Worth cannot regulate crematoriums.

So if you see smoke coming from a crematorium and think it’s a good idea to to go there and pound “their door down”, you might have a PBSO deputy on the way and you’ll have a bigger problem to deal with. Instead, contact the Dept. of Health and complain all you can. And get your neighbors to complain too.

Anyhow, this latest news about crematoriums stands in “thick black” contrast to this article by another Post reporter two years ago:

“The thick black smoke was hard to miss. It curled into the sky, swallowing the tops of palm trees and tumbling down like a shroud over the downtown streets around Lake Avenue just west of U.S. 1.”

In 2015, you see, the “thick” smoke “curled” skyward, “swallowing” our trees, and tumbled down our City streets “like a shroud”.

Heavy sigh.

No comments: