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The cost to rest in peace is going up

The cost to rest in peace in Cairo is about to become a little more expensive.
The Cairo City Council voted unanimously Monday night to increase the cost of cemetery lots by $50. Effective Oct. 1, the rates will be: Crestview Cemetery – $200 plus $10 recording fee; Cairo City Cemetery – $200 plus $10 recording fee; and Forest Lawn Cemetery – $250 plus $10 recording fee.
There are no longer any lots available for sale in Greenwood Cemetery on U.S. 84 East.
Cairo City Manager Chris Addleton recommended the increase after surveying rates for lots charged by surrounding jurisdictions.
Veteran Cairo City Councilman Ernest Cloud, a local mortician, assisted Addleton in surveying rates for cemetery lots in the area.
Addleton also shared information with the council for a columbarium or cremation crypt to be erected at Forest Lawn Cemetery.
The estimated cost for the columbarium, foundation and two benches is  $10,000, which would be financed through the city’s cemetery fund reserve account.
According to Cloud, there is a growing demand for cremation crypts.
“A lot of families want to have somewhere to put the cremains and many don’t want to bury them,” Cloud said.
The proposed columbarium would have the capacity to hold 48 remains. Spaces in the cremation crypt would be sold for $500 plus a $10 recording fee and could accommodate remains for two people.
Councilman James H. (Jimmy) Douglas recommended Addleton and Cloud develop some policies and procedures governing the columbarium to keep the name plaques placed on the outside “professional looking” and to maintain a “standard.”
Douglas also suggested that profits realized from the sale of the spaces in the columbarium over and above the purchase and installation price to be put in a reserve account to maintain the facility in the future.
The council unanimously approved Addleton moving forward with the purchase of the columbarium. Community Services Director Pat Mitchell, who oversees the city cemeteries, is proposing that the columbarium be erected near the gazebo at Forest Lawn Cemetery.
In other cemetery related news from Monday night’s meeting, the council also instructed the city manager to have section B of Forest Lawn surveyed and roads and burial spaces designated and marked off at the request of Councilman Cloud.
“We still have plenty of lots in section A, but if we could get the roads designated in section b before next spring when we bid out the paving, we could get those paved,” Cloud said.

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