Regulations

Minnesota firm approved for alkaline hydrolysis, more
Regulations

Minnesota firm approved for alkaline hydrolysis, more

About ten days ago we told you that Ballard-Sunder Funeral Home and Cremation in Jordan, Minnesota, was pursuing the idea of placing an alkaline hydrolysis unit in their business so that client families have a choice between flame cremation and alkaline hydrolysis – sometimes known as water or green cremation. According to this article, the company was approved by the City of Jordan to offer the additional service.  It is interesting to note that no “significant conditions” were added to […]

The U.S. Supreme Court and Death Care
Regulations

The U.S. Supreme Court and Death Care

There is a lot of talk about the United States Supreme Court this week.  The talk ramps up during the first week of October every year because that is when the court goes back into session hearing cases after its summer recess.  Here is an article from the Washington Post pertaining to the issues coming before the nation’s top court this year. The article points out five cases that highlight the agenda for the court: Whether federal law protects LGBTQ […]

Iowa Attorney General investigating two funeral homes prepaid accounts
Regulations

Iowa Attorney General investigating two funeral homes prepaid accounts

According to an article published yesterday from Radio Iowa that you can read here, the Iowa attorney general is going to court asking that the Iowa Insurance Division be allowed to step in and try to recoup money from two funeral homes under investigation. According to a statement in the article, Dennis Britson, of the securities bureau in the Iowa Insurance Division commented, “This is about safeguarding consumer funds and getting them back to those individuals that those accounts are […]

Article says Oregon “falls short” in death care inspections
Regulations

Article says Oregon “falls short” in death care inspections

I came across a really good consumer information article the other day about the State of Oregon and its Mortuary and Cemetery Board.  The point of the article was an information topic on how the funeral home, cremation, and cemetery industry is regulated in that state.  You can read the article here. As my headline indicates, the newspaper article headline also says that “Inspections of Oregon’s funeral services fall short”.  However, when you read the entire article it is not […]

Australian pre-need insurer faces investigation and civil action
Regulations

Australian pre-need insurer faces investigation and civil action

This article from the Sydney Morning Herald relates to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) that, according to that article, commenced action last week against funeral and accident insurance company Select AFSL  and its director, Russell Howden. The article mentions that the company faces a lawsuit from Australia’s corporate regulator over what they call “coercive sales tactics”.  It is alleged that Select AFSL offered staff trips to Las Vegas and other prizes for pushing funeral insurance policies to vulnerable […]

Dillinger may not be exhumed after all
Cemetery Regulations

Dillinger may not be exhumed after all

Last month we brought you this story that pertained to the exhumation of a legendary bank robber who was at one time known as “Public Enemy #1”.  We refer to the life and death of John Dillinger and his eventual burial at the Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis, Indiana. We told you last month that relatives of Mr. Dillinger have reason to believe and have signed an affidavit that cites, “that they have evidence the person shot at the Biograph […]

Grave robbery. . . the 21st century way
Cemetery Regulations

Grave robbery. . . the 21st century way

“Members of a nonprofit Queens cemetery board plundered its coffers and made off with money meant to keep the burial grounds running” according to a suit filed by the New York Attorney General. . . . is how this article from the New York Post begins. According to the article the suit goes on to claim that several current and former board members of the Lutheran All Faiths Cemetery – which is a non-profit cemetery located in Queens, New York […]

Back to School
Regulations

Back to School

Today I will be enjoying one of my favorite days of the year. . . .  Convocation Day at the University of Minnesota.  It is the day we welcome the new students to the University of Minnesota and as one of the 12 people appointed by the State Legislature to serve on the governing board of the University, I get to play a small part. For me the day will start with the Convocation whereby all 5,000+ Freshmen will take […]

The staffing issue
Regulations

The staffing issue

A couple of things came to my attention last week that made me again think about the staffing issue facing funeral homes across the country.  While I am no longer on the front lines in looking for licensed staff, I do hear from my colleagues that hiring and retaining professional funeral home licensed staff is a critical issue in operating their businesses. Last Monday I chaired a meeting of a non-profit company in the Fargo, North Dakota, market that operates […]

Contrasting Forces:  Landmark Preservation vs. Redevelopment
Regulations

Contrasting Forces: Landmark Preservation vs. Redevelopment

What to do with a funeral home that has “become outdated and closed due to a drop in demand?”  That is the question that seems to have an answer from most of us and, in particular, the owner in this case Service Corporation International (SCI).  I’m guessing that most of us would put the building on the market and see who might want to buy it for a redevelopment project. That is exactly what Service Corporation International thought of doing […]