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Mountain Pocono mayor resigns to fight crematorium

By Randy Kraft, WFMZ.com Reporter, RKraft@wfmz.com
Published On: Aug 02 2013 05:11:22 PM CDT
Updated On: Aug 02 2013 05:39:59 PM CDT

The Mayor of Mount Pocono Borough says he's stepping down to do battle with a planned funeral home crematorium.

MOUNT POCONO, Pa. -

Rich Dorkoski is resigning as the mayor of Mount Pocono to continue fighting a proposed crematorium in the Monroe County borough.

The  66-year-old was appointed mayor last September, to complete the term of the previous mayor who moved out of the area. 

Dorkoski, a Republican whose term as mayor expires Jan. 1, was planning to seek election to a four-year-term in November, but said he withdrew his name in time for his party to get another candidate on the ballot.

Dorkoski said he submitted his resignation to borough council during its work session earlier this week. He expects council will act to approve that resignation during its Monday night meeting

Dorkoski, a 10-year resident of Mount Pocono, said he has been a vocal critic of the crematorium proposal for years, but decided it is not appropriate for him to continue doing so as mayor. But he also said his opposition to the crematorium is the reason he agreed to become mayor.

He also serves on the borough planning commission and does not intend to resign from that position.

He said the crematorium is proposed by the Pula Funeral Home, 35 Sterling Road in Mount Pocono. He explains his opposition is what spurred his interest in borough government.

He wants make sure borough council informs the the State Department of Environmental Protection about residents' objectons to the crematorium.

Dorkoski said the proposed crematorium would be very close to his house. He contends it does not belong in a residential or business area, adding if it  malfunctions, it could emit toxins into the air near a dentist's office, a daycare and a shopping center with a Dunkin Donuts.