Linden Morris

TAFE sale set to fund in-demand burial wall

MONEY from the sale of the Applethorpe TAFE will be used to fund the construction of a new $125,000 burial wall at the Stanthorpe Cemetery.

Southern Downs Regional Councillors voted unanimously in favour of using funds from the Applethorpe TAFE sale to pay for the 24 vault burial wall, which is the first part of the second stage of the Stanthorpe Cemetery's Outdoor Burial Wall.

Cr Vic Pennisi told a general meeting of the council yesterday he believed construction on the burial vault needed to be started as soon as possible - instead of waiting for 50% of the vaults to be purchased.

"I propose we start using money from the Applethorpe TAFE, to be paid back as the vaults are sold," he said.

"In this block we have to be able to make sure we have them available as people need them.

"We have to build them in my view and they will sell."

The first stage of the burial wall, containing 90 vaults, was reserved in a short space of a time, according to a report to the council.

The decision comes as the Southern Downs Regional Council begins conducting a review into the region's cemetery operations, fees and charges - stemming from a complaint about over-time fees charged to graveside funerals.

There was debate over whether to set the price of the vaults at $5200 - enough to cover costs, with some councillors arguing the price will change under the proposed cemeteries review to be finalised in February.

Acting CEO David Tuxford told councillors the price of the vaults for this block was more than the previous.

"We won't have the wall built until the cemetery review is done," he said.

"The $5200 is just an indication to the community of what they will be up for at this present time."

Councillors also voted in favour of setting an interment fee for the new lawn cemetery at the Wallangarra Cemetery of $1849.60 - the same cost as the Stanthorpe Lawn Cemetery.



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