Voters make grave decision
Ryan Summerlin November 9, 2012
The Snyderville Basin will someday have a cemetery, thanks to the passage of Proposition 3 on Tuesday, which approved the creation of a Snyderdville Basin Cemetery District.
The Cemetery District will allow an appointed board to assess the need for a cemetery in the Snyderville Basin, where a cemetery should be located, how much it will cost and how it should be funded.
Summit County Councilor Sally Elliott said she carried the idea of forming a cemetery district from her time on the now-defunct County Commission to County Council.
"I was never able to get anything done about it as a County Commissioner," she said. "We talked about needing it at great lengths, and we used to get lots of input from people who want to be buried close to home."
Due to space constraints, Park City now only allows residents living within the city limits of Park City to use the Park City Cemetery.
"It became very apparent that there is no place for Snyderville Basin residents to go," Elliott said. "Other areas of Summit County have cemetery districts, but the Snyderville Basin does not."
The ballot measure did not approve the collecting of taxes, which will have to go before voters for approval once cost and funding are determined.
"We’ve talked about the possibility of being very inclusive," Elliott said. "Park City is building a memorial wall, so that people who have chosen to be cremated or have their bodies donated can have a simple plaque on a memorial wall. We’d like to do something similar if the board approves that sort of thing."
The County Council has also talked about including an area where ashes from cremation can be placed, an area for environmentally-friendly burials and an area for traditional burials.
"We have offered up several proposed locations that are located on county-owned land, particularly the PRI open space parcel," Elliott said.
The parcel is next to the Utah Olympic Park and the Boyer Research Park, but according to County Manager Bob Jasper in a previous interview, the lower land is wetland, while the upper land has rocky soil.
"That’s not ideal and I think some people oppose that. But certainly it’s free, it’s on the table and it’s been paid for because it’s already owned by the public," Elliott said.
With the ballot measure approved, the next step is for the County Council to appoint a Cemetery District board, for which they will be accepting applications once they get through the current budget process.