Top News

Corner Brook council turns down application for crematorium on Country Road

Corner Brook Deputy Mayor Bernd Staeben is seen during Monday’s public council meeting.
Corner Brook Deputy Mayor Bernd Staeben is seen during Monday’s public council meeting.

As about 10 residents of the Country Road area listened intently, Corner Brook city council debated a motion on Monday evening to approve an application for a crematorium to be constructed at the rear of Country Haven Funeral Home.

When all was said and done, the motion was defeated by a vote of two to five.

It’s a little different vote than what occurred on July 10 when a tie vote put the project on hold.

Back then councillors Tony Buckle, Josh Carey and Mary Ann Murphy voted to deny the permit, while Deputy Mayor Bernd Staeben and councillors Keith Cormier and Linda Chaisson voted against the motion to deny it.

Mayor Charles Pender lives in the area and had declared himself in conflict prior to the vote.

However, council was in agreement during Monday’s meeting that he was not in conflict.

It would have appeared then that Pender would be the deciding vote with Buckle, Carey and Murphy maintaining their objections.

But Staeben, who presented the motion, changed his position on the issue, and with Pender also against it, the decision was made with only Cormier and Chaisson voting for it.

After the meeting Staeben said when council met with funeral home owner Dwayne Parsons, he made commitments about providing more information about the equipment and what he wanted to do, but council hasn’t heard from him.

Staeben said for him that was the fundamental issue.

He noted that a story in The Western Star last week about residents’ concerns with a crematorium in Stephenville didn’t help the issue.

“That really weighed on my mind. I really agonized over that.”

Like other members of council Staeben said he heard from residents of the area opposed to the crematorium.

Before the new motion was presented, the original motion, which was not valid due to a technical error, had to be voted down.

The new motion was not only worded correctly but also contained the correct section of the city’s development regulations.

What happened with the application and the way it was handled prompted Staeben to express his concern over the process and the way council brings about decisions.

“We need to be lot more in a consultative mode before this comes to council table, so we have a better sense of the tenure and feel of the community.”

Staeben, however, agreed with the suggestion made during the meeting that a crematorium was needed in the city, just not in that area.

“I just felt this wasn’t a good decision.”

Related stories:

Tied Corner Brook city council vote puts Country Haven’s crematorium plans on hold

Recent Stories