Legislative bill targets Eternal Hills Cemetery issues

Klamath Falls, Ore. – Conditions at Eternal Hills and Memorial Gardens has people in Klamath Falls up in arms.

An Oregon House Bill is aimed at preventing similar situations.

While people paid for perpetual care at Eternal Hills, conditions at the cemetery have been deteriorating.

Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed a bill into law last month addressing those concerns.

“Unfortunately, it will not resolve the problem at Eternal Hills.”  Notes Klamath County District Attorney Eve Costello.

Due to multiple complaints, the previous owners lost their license to operate in 2016.

The owners were placed in involuntary bankruptcy in 2017.

D.A. Costello notes this places the cemetery in a difficult position.  “We can’t appoint a receiver, or do anything else at this point with this circumstance.”

Trust money for maintenance can’t be accessed without a certified receiver.

Costello explains House Bill 2088 will allow individual owners of plots to band together in the future, or ask local governments to initiate a receivership.  “Which will allow the monies that they routinely pay for that maintenance to be released, and allowed to be distributed.”

The D.A. says that while she’s keeping a close eye on the situation, the issue is being dealt with at a state level.  “The District Attorney’s Office is not really involved in this process – that’s where the Oregon Mortuary and Cemetery Board, and the Department of Justice have been involved.”

Eternal Hills remains open to the public, and burials are still being made through licensed funeral homes.

An informal group is organizing a clean-up effort for this Saturday at Eternal Hills.

You’ll find more information on the ‘Klamath Falls Eternal Hills Group’ Facebook page.

 

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