Lunenburg Cemetery Commission Tackles Headstone Restoration and DPW Issues

In a recent meeting, the Lunenburg Cemetery Commission addressed a spectrum of issues concerning cemetery operations, including the restoration of headstones, questions regarding the compliance with state laws, and the management of the Department of Public Works (DPW). Community members participated, voicing concerns over the treatment of the DPW director and the transparency of the commission’s actions.

The session began with Mike Clark, a potential candidate for the commission, introducing himself. Clark’s background includes involvement in town committees and experience with cemetery-related projects through the Boy Scouts. The commission welcomed his interest and discussed his potential involvement.

Public comments featured prominently with John Bowen questioning the cost of data entry for the DPW’s Rake program and the allocation of funds for cemetery maintenance. He also raised concerns about the commission’s adherence to state laws and discussed the importance of the restoration of headstones, as well as the availability of historical restoration grants. Rogers also commented on the increased discontent within the town’s committees and organizations, linking it to the expansion of personnel.

A significant portion of the meeting was dedicated to updates from the DPW. The status of roadways in the North and South cemeteries was reviewed, as was the advertisement of part-time seasonal cemetery labor positions. The commission also discussed the next steps for the 2024 season DPW maintenance plan. Concerns were raised about the Rain Maker, a cemetery information management system, particularly regarding access to the software and data handling. The commission delved into ongoing issues related to cemetery refunds, where discrepancies in the handling of refund requests by the DPW director were noted. The debate centered on the authority and process for approving refunds, with a member expressing concerns about changes in the refund handling procedures under the new DPW director and the Cemetery Commission.

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Another public speaker expressed a desire to speak at greater length in a future meeting to discuss the cemetery issues more thoroughly and the treatment of the DPW director. This request underlines the community’s interest in the governance of cemetery affairs and its operations.

The commission also discussed logistical matters, such as the absence of a member due to a scheduled vacation and plans to review a request for a bench in the North Cemetery.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.

Town Manager:
Heather R. Lemieux
Cemetery Commission Officials:
Nancy Foss Yasko, David Dorren, Todd Holman (Cemetery Superintendent)

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