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Village approves new crematory ordinance

Aug. 29, 2012

Village of Hartland - The Village Board on Monday approved a new ordinance that will allow crematories to operate as a conditional use in the M-1 zoning district and disallow them in the B-3 zoning district.

The ordinance, which passed unanimously and with no discussion, includes several restrictions on crematory operations.

Among other restrictions, the ordinance allows only two crematories to operate in Hartland, limits the number of cremations per week to 15 per crematory, and requires that crematories be operated by an active funeral home in the village.

Currently, the Evert-Luko Funeral Home, 170 Warren Ave., is the only funeral home in the village. Evert-Luko owner Renee Evert has been trying to build a crematory in Lake Country for the past three years, and has expressed interest in building one in the village's M-1 district, although she has not yet filed any formal proposals with the village to do so.

A letter sent to the village in late July by Christine Toson Hentges, a vice president at Hartland-based The Tribute Companies, questioned the legality of restricting crematory operations to funeral homes in the village. The Tribute Companies, a cemetery management and consulting firm, previously expressed interest in operating its own crematory in Hartland.

According to Village Board members, Village Attorney Hector de la Mora has advised them that the village has good legal ground to include the restrictions.

"We have a very good basis in law in why we're limiting it, because we do not want to become a hub. We're not making it exclusive," said Village President David Lamerand. "The only reason somebody would want to just have a crematorium would be for a hub. We're saying that's not want we want, and our ordinance, in very plain language, expresses that."

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