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The Public Cemetery: Meeting Challenges in a Time of Change

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Dr. Robert Yehl

Published in: Government & Nonprofit
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The Public Cemetery: Meeting Challenges in a Time of Change

  1. 1. THE PUBLIC CEMETERY: MEETING NEW CHALLENGES IN A TIME OF CHANGE Georgia MunicipalCemeteryAssociation | 4 October 2017 Robert (Sherman)Yehl, Associate Professor of Political Science Valdosta State University 1
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  4. 4. Armageddon  Lack of space  Eroded trust funds  Higher maintenance costs  Cremation 4
  5. 5. History  Town commons, church yards  Urban growth  19th century  Park like settings  Cultural significance 5
  6. 6. A Public Issue  “Sensitive” contents  Expansion – nuisance  Environmental externalities  Older population  Discrimination 6
  7. 7. The Planning Challenge  Still a need for grave space  83,000 additional acres needed between 2024 and 2042  Expenditures exceeding revenues  Deferred maintenance  Utilities  Staffing 7
  8. 8. 21st Century Management  Secondary purposes  Long-term planning  Benchmarking  New services  Technology  Staffing 8
  9. 9. Protect|Preserve|Promote  Annual fee review  New products  Dedicate tax  ”Green” burials  Reframe as park  Enhanced security  Website/social media 9
  10. 10. Continuity & Creativity  Preservation  Promotion  Repositioning 10
  11. 11. 11 Contact: rpyehl@valdosta.edu
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