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This entry was published on 2014-09-22
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SECTION 296
Abandonment of cemeteries
Town (TWN) CHAPTER 62, ARTICLE 17
§ 296. Abandonment of cemeteries. Upon a verified petition presented
to a judge of a court of record by any supervisor of any town in this
state, the judge to whom said verified petition is presented shall make
an order to show cause, returnable before him at a time and place within
the county in not less than twenty days from the date of presentation of
said petition, why the remains of any deceased person buried in potter's
field, or in any neglected or abandoned cemeteries in which no deceased
person shall have been interred within twenty years, should not be
removed to and reinterred in a properly kept incorporated cemetery in
the same town or in a town or city adjoining the town in which the
remains of each deceased person or persons are buried, and to fix the
amount of expenses for such removal and reinterment, and the order to
show cause shall provide for its publication in a newspaper, to be
designated in the order, which is published nearest to the cemetery from
which the removal is to be made, once in each week for two successive
weeks. The verified petition presented to the judge shall show that the
petitioner is a supervisor of the town in which said cemetery is located
and (1) the name of the deceased person or persons whose remains are
sought to be removed, if known; (2) the name and location of the
cemetery in which he is interred and from which removal is asked to be
made; (3) the name and location of the incorporated cemetery to which
the remains are desired to be removed and reinterred; (4) the facts
showing the reasons for such removal. Upon the return day of the order
to show cause and at the time and place fixed in said order, upon filing
proof of publication of the order to show cause with the judge, if no
objection is made thereto, he shall make an order directing the removal
of the remains of said deceased person or persons to the cemetery
designated in the petition within the town or city or within a town
adjoining the town or city in which the remains are then buried and
shall specify in the order the amount of the expenses of such removal,
which expenses of removal and reinterment, including the expense of the
proceeding under this section, shall be a charge upon the town in which
the cemetery is situated from which the removal is made and such
expenses shall be a town charge and audited by the town board and paid
in the same manner as other town charges. On and after the removal and
reinterment of the remains of any deceased person or persons, the
expenses for annual care of the grave in the cemetery to which the
removal is made shall be annually provided by the town in which the
remains were originally buried at a rate not to exceed twenty dollars
per grave, and shall be paid annually to the incorporated cemetery
association to which the remains of each deceased person may be removed
or reinterred. Any town owning a lot or lots in a cemetery maintained by
an incorporated cemetery association in which the remains of deceased
persons have been or may be buried pursuant to this section, however,
may pay such association an amount sufficient to provide perpetual care
therefor. The petition and order shall be filed in the county clerk's
office of the county in which the remains of the deceased person were
originally interred, and the service of a certified copy of the final
order upon the cemetery association shall be made prior to any removal.
Any relative of the deceased person or the officer of any cemetery
association in which the remains of the deceased person were originally
interred may oppose the granting of said order and the judge shall
summarily hear the statement of the parties and make such order as the
justice and equity of the application shall require. Any headstone or
monument which marks the grave of the deceased person shall be removed
and reset at the grave in the cemetery in which the removal is permitted
to be made and in each case the final order shall provide the amount of
the expenses of such removals and reinterment and resetting of the
headstone or monument, including the expenses of the proceedings under
this section; except that where provision is otherwise made for the
purchase or erection of a new headstone, monument or marker at the grave
in the cemetery to which such removal is permitted, such old headstone
or monument need not be so removed and reset, in which case such final
order shall not provide for the expense of resetting. The order shall
designate the person or persons having charge of the removals and
reinterments. Upon completion of the removal, reinterment and resetting
of the headstones or monuments, the person or persons having charge of
the same shall make a verified report of the removal, reinterment and
resetting of the headstone or monument and file the report in the
clerk's office of the proper county.

After said bodies shall have been removed and reinterred in the manner
prescribed by said order, said lands in which such deceased persons were
originally interred shall be available for and subject to such uses for
town purposes as the town board of such town may determine and may be
conveyed or otherwise disposed of in the same manner as other town
lands.