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Stow City Council Postpones Crematorium Vote

Stow City Council voted 4-3 Thursday night to table a measure that, if approved, would allow for the construction of a crematorium at the Redmon Funeral Home.

Those looking for a conclusion to the long-disputed crematorium issue went home disappointed Thursday night after Stow City Council voted 4-3 to table the measure.

Discussion on whether the Redmon Funeral Home would be able to install a crematorium won't resume until Monday, Jan. 7 when Council reconvenes following the holiday break. 

Over the last several months, residents have stood and voiced their opposition to the plan, saying the crematorium could present potential health risks to those who live in close proximity to the funeral parlor, located at 3633 Darrow Rd. 

Dr. Mark Ryland -- a Stow resident who teaches neurodiagnostics at Tri-C -- addressed council at its meeting this past Monday, saying "...It has been demonstrated that crematoriums cause the release of mercury which is known to be neurotoxic and ototoxic, meaning it causes damage to the nervous system and to hearing.”

Ryland said those most at risk are children, pregnant women and the elderly, reports the Akron Beacon Journal. 

Following Thursday's meeting, Ward 4 Councilwoman Mary Bednar said the measure, as it stands, may be too broad and may need to be "tightened" with amendments where permissible to address concerns. 

Bednar said she would confer with her peers and city officials to determine if amendments could be added to the measure, like: requiring Redmon employees to remove teeth from bodies that contain amalgam, a mercury alloy used to fill cavities.

The measure will be voted on at the Jan. 10 council meeting. 

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