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Speak Out: Hidden Lilburn Crematory Have You Concerned?

One woman recently brought her issues to council regarding a crematory reported to be tucked behind Unique Kitchen, Bath & Flooring on U.S. Highway 29.

Along Lawrenceville Highway, a crematory business is squeezed behind the Unique Kitchen, Bath & Flooring and across the street from Lilburn Middle School, as reported on 11Alive.

You can't event see it from the street, and there is no sign on the road letting you know it's there.

Why is that?

-- Are you concerned about this issue? Let us know in the comment section. --

On Oct. 9, during the public comment period of the Lilburn council meeting, Tia Severino tried to bring her concerns to council, but according to media reports, she was shut down.

(According to Mayor Johnny Crist, the public is expected to have brought any concerns to the city staff before bringing them before a council meeting in an open comment period.) 

"There's something wrong with this one over there," Severino said in a video on 11Alive regarding the crematory.

Nikki Young, public relations manager for Lilburn, sent Patch a response to Severino's concerns. It read, in part: "The City of Lilburn has verified in the past that this business complies with all city ordinances. The business is licensed and inspected through the State Board of Funeral Service."

According to 11Alive, the crematory is named "Colonial Cremation Services" and has been in operation for more than two decades.

So, speak out. Where you at the council meeting? Do you think the mayor was right to cut Severino off? Do you think her concerns are justified?

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You may also be interested in this blog "A lesson in the how the 'power structure' works" posted on Lilburn-Mountain Park Patch.

Rethinknow October 09, 2012 at 04:38 PM
It's the same in Lilburn as it is anyplace, including Washington D.C. If you watch the way the Mayor shut Ms Severino down you will see a very good example of how opposing views are dealt with here in Lilburn. The next step will be some attempt to diminish what Ms Severino is attempting to do. And if that does not work they will demonize her. It is certain if anyone does some investigating it will be discovered that the City or some in the City have been aware of it for a long time. And at that point you will see some pretty magnificent tap dancing with the head of the chorus line being the Honorable Mayor. There were rumors and some citizen discussion a couple of years ago. 'Secret' Lilburn crematory questioned Click here for the video http://goo.gl/XzAJO
Rethinknow October 09, 2012 at 08:18 PM
The Mayor was rude, arrogant and wrong. Which one of these three is the most offensive to you? It does not matter if the crematory’s existence is legal and all of the zoning guidelines are being met. What occurred last night was a display of power. There is no other way to describe it. Bullying and intimidation was displayed by the Mayor because a citizen wanted to bring an issue to public attention. Do we all remember that this Mayor, as a candidate assured us he was going to bring openness, transparency, and citizen input? Johnny Crist did violate Ms Severino’s First Amendment right to free speech and it could be said he committed a violation of civil rights under “color of law”, a violation of 42USc1983. Look it up http://conservapedia.com/42_U.S.C._%C2%A7_1983 Does the Mayor wish to comment? I'm guessing the answer is NO! He and much of City officialdom choose to be very quiet and know eventually it will go away. Funny how many of that same group squeal and whine when it happens in Washington D.C. They don’t see themselves as EXACTLY the same.
CommunityAwarenessNetwork October 10, 2012 at 03:47 AM
The concerns are being raised because the way this crematory was installed - without public notice or input - is suspicious at best. When it was approved, the only investigation done by the city council was to consult with a building inspector and decide (contrary to any allowance in the zoning laws in Lilburn, which do not allow incinerators within the city limits) based on this building inspector's OPINION that a crematory was "similar enough" to an allowable use in the zone C1, that they didn't need to issue a special use permit. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to know that a crematory and a funeral home are VERY different, and a crematory is an incinerator. So, without requiring an SUP, no notice was given, no public hearing held, and for 15 years it operated under a license issued to a different address. This is in violation of GA laws, and when it was brought to the SOS and GA Funeral Board, instead of investigating they changed the address on the license. The issue here is whether or not the public has a right to know it is there, as it is an unregulated unmonitored source of pollution, including mercury and dioxins. The owner of the crematory has made several references to this crematory as proof that crematories are safe because there have never been any complaints about it. Kind of hard to complain about something if you don't know it is there!
Thor Johnson October 10, 2012 at 10:21 AM
Scott “whatever” is a “RUDE, ARROGANT and WRONG” bully I would like you to see comments made on the 11 Alive website page of this story by COUNCILMAN Batterton… and notice he does not identify himself as a Lilburn City Councilman. Scott Batterton • Works at Scott Batterton DDS “Never heard of a community activist named Tia whatever,she an expert on crematory operations?” Read the way Scott Batterton, a long time Lilburn City Councilman, former Lilburn City Mayor who was elected to REPRESENT CITIZENS refers to Ms Severino Scott “whatever” is a “RUDE, ARROGANT and WRONG” bully. He is NO different than politicians that are elected to represent us in Washington D.C. and become devoted to special interests and hold the citizen in disdain. Both Scott “whatever” and Mayor of “openness, transparency, and citizen input” owe TIA SEVERINO a public apology! Lets see if they are capable. A huge Thank you “CommunityAwarnessNetwork
Hiedi Anne Lefler October 10, 2012 at 10:53 PM
YOU GO TIA AND DONT BACK DOWN! I am shocked she was shut down so rudely...at a public meeting no less. This has been an ongoing war over here for quite some years, between this and the Bill Head Funeral Home... The powers that be should AT LEAST have the EPA do some soil/air quality testing and make that information public so we, as citizens can make our own choices what emissions we are exposed to and exposing our children to. Since moving in this neighborhood, I have developed cataracts, glaucoma and now secondary cataracts on top of my artificial lenses...IM IN MY 30's! My doctors are baffled and have consistently asked me if I have been exposed to anything 'environmental". Also, my ADULT dogs passed away...the vet stated it appeared to be some kind of 'super parvo" they were 3+ years old and all vaccinated... Coincidence? ...maybe. Maybe not. SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT IN THIS NECK OF THE WOODS. TIA-PLEASE DONT BACK DOWN, KEEP FIGHTING FOR THE GOOD OF OUR COMMUNITY!
Thor Johnson October 10, 2012 at 11:45 PM
Character... where is it? We see the Mayor and Councilman Scott "whatever" true character don't we? If they don't have the sanctuary of the council meeting and the ability to bully their way out of something they don't want to address ... they are silent. They both are wrong on so many fronts and neither have the courage or character to make a simple apology. They soooo remind me of politicians. If anyone wants to start a group of "concerned citizens" I'm interested. You can go to my blog http://easybizbasics.blogspot.com/ and choose the tab... Your questions/comments... and leave me a way to contact you and a comment on what you think.
angel alonso October 11, 2012 at 04:21 PM
It is concerning to see how we the people and citizens of lilburn. That we let our local Gov. do what they want as bullies and get away with it.Well it's time to put a stop on this and any other things going on in lilburn.First Amemdment rights to speak is a big one,and so to cover they back side the public comments might go away.But the back door politices begins ,again !!!the work section of the city coucil meeting was to be out in the big hall for everyone,but we have not seen this ,and will we? Thor Johnson is right ,and a simple apology and hear Tia .And the apology shoud be public and even in the media.....
Thor Johnson October 11, 2012 at 09:54 PM
Wow the stars must be aligned. For those who know me and Angel you know in the past we have not agreed on several issues. Angel I appreciate your perspective. We need more folks with a goal of government transparency. And the LOCAL level is the PERFECT place to start. I also received a note from a councilman today. I'm genuinely perplexed at some of the content. I'll write more later... BTW I have had contacts form folks interested in a "concerned citizens" discussion group. If you are interested you can go to my blog http://easybizbasics.blogspot.com/ and choose the tab (at the top of the page)... Your questions/comments... and leave me a way to contact you and a comment on what you think.
Thor Johnson October 13, 2012 at 09:37 AM
I was wrong! Ms Severino is not a Lilburn resident. So my sharp remarks to Councilman Scott “WHATEVER” Batterton were “technically” wrong. However the spirit of my remarks... ie the arrogance and bullying behavior of Councilman Scott “WHATEVER” Batterton were not. Remember Councilman Scott “WHATEVER” Batterton said this (on the 11 Alive website) Scott Batterton • Works at Scott Batterton DDS “Never heard of a community activist named Tia whatever,she an expert on crematory operations?” And here’s the “sweet” part... It appears that Ms Severino does know one heck of a lot about CREMATORY stuff... I’m comfortable in saying a heck of a lot more than Councilman Scott “WHATEVER” Batterton. Ms Severino has been doing research for a number of years and has a pretty insightful website. It contains a significant amount of information, again. I’m guessing FAR MORE than anyone of the esteem council and mayor... just guessing. Go to the website for a ton of knowledge... http://no2crematory.wordpress.com/ If you would like to be a part of a process that can have an impact go to my Blog http://easybizbasics.blogspot.com/ and choose the TAB at the top... Your questions/comments and leave me your contact info and a comment.
CommunityAwarenessNetwork October 15, 2012 at 06:18 AM
The City Council is the governing body of the City of Lilburn with direct responsibility for the formulation of City Policy. General responsibilities of the City Council include: 1. Hearing views of the public on matters concerning City operations. Mayor Johnny Crist: "It is his delight and pleasure to serve the citizens of Lilburn." "Dr. Batterton has lived in Lilburn for over 25 years and has been involved with Lilburn City government for most of that time." "Mr. Dunn plans to listen to the wisdom of longtime residents and combine those insights with the vision of newer citizens to revitalize Lilburn. He believes the best thing an elected official can do is to hear all community voices and then make an objective decision that will honor the legacy of Lilburn, while attracting newcomers." "Eddie Price ... is a deeply committed member of the community." "Mr. Wight has a bachelor of science degree in Urban Planning from the University of Utah and a Juris Doctor from Wake Forest University." The mission of the City of Lilburn is to provide exemplary municipal services, quality city infrastructure and facilities and to inspire community improvements that add value to the lives of our residents and enhance businesses.
CommunityAwarenessNetwork October 15, 2012 at 06:28 AM
All of this sounds nice, doesn't it? If the Mayor and City Council want to live up to the image they are trying to convey about themselves and Lilburn, they need to consider the following: First Amendment Rights - our founding fathers believed strongly, that without the citizens having the RIGHT to redress their government, power would be abused. The fact that the city council came up with a NEW "rule" on the spot - to silence a CITIZEN who was trying to share important information - simply because they did not want to "Look Bad" is exactly the kind of ABUSE that the first amendment is meant to prevent, There are no rules that have ever been written that require a person wishing to speak during public comments to have spoken to the staff beforehand. This may have been an idea that was tossed around - what to do if confronted with a situation such as last Monday - but nowhere is the rule written or posted so that a person would know. Conversations in the hall DO NOT COUNT. Sorry, these kind of rules don't work - they are in direct violation of first amendment rights. If the City of Lilburn does write and post such rules, they might be heartily opposed, because it is a means of limiting true freedom of speech. There are rumors of doing away with Public Comments, or restricting who can speak. These ideas don't serve the mission of Lilburn or the duties of the council. Self-preservation is not the first and most important thing that council members should worry about..
Rethinknow October 15, 2012 at 09:07 AM
If you value Free Speech You Must read the comments by CommunityAwarnessNetwork

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