Manweller bill to create state historic cemetery capital grant program passes House
In an effort to address the growing problem of decaying and abandoned cemeteries, Rep. Matt Manweller introduced House Bill 2637 this legislative session. The state House of Representatives passed the bill over to the Senate Wednesday, Feb. 17, by a unanimous vote.
The bill would create the Washington state Historic Cemetery Preservation Capital Grant program in the Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation (DAHP).
“This legislation would allow cemetery property owners, local governments and nonprofits to apply for small grants which they could use to lower their maintenance and operation costs,” said Manweller, R-Ellensburg. “According to the historical preservation department, there are more than 100 cemeteries that are poorly maintained or not being maintained at all. This gives communities a chance to preserve the history of their cemeteries and keep them as a functioning asset in some circumstances.”
The legislation would require applications be submitted to the DAHP, then transmitted to the Funeral and Cemetery Board under the Department of Licensing. The board would then evaluate and prioritize the applications and send a list of prioritized projects to the DAHP for funding.
The Senate has until March 4 to pass the bill. The Legislature is scheduled to adjourn the regular 60-day session on March 10.
For more information about Rep. Manweller, visit: www.representativemattmanweller.com.
###Washington State House Republican Communications