Cemetery Rules

Cemetery Rules

Last revised and approved at the 11/3/2020 board meeting.

All holders of Burial Right(s) and members of the general public shall be subject to these Rules and Regulations, and to any amendments or alterations as shall be hereafter adopted by the Board of Trustees from time to time.

Mount Union Historic Cemetery is private property owned by The Mount Union Cemetery Association, a non-profit corporation registered with the IRS and the Oregon Secretary of State and defined by Oregon Revised Statute 97.772.

The grounds are open to the public during daylight hours, according to the following rules and regulations.

I. Definitions

Burial Right: The term Burial Right shall mean a right to Interment, and does not convey deed or title to any real property.

Burial Space: The term Burial Space shall mean an individual space within a lot (see below) used, or intended to be used, for the permanent interment therein of the remains of one or more deceased persons.
Cemetery: Refers to the Mount Union Historic Cemetery (MUHC) and/or the Mount Union Cemetery Association (MUCA).

Certificate of Burial Right(s): Shall mean the original Deed, Certificate, or Indenture, which was given by the Cemetery to the original purchaser(s) of Burial Right(s) and which may be used to authorize interment.
Grave: The term Grave shall mean a space upon which there has been a permitted interment.
Interment: The term Interment shall mean the disposition of remains of a deceased person by burial, whether in a coffin or an urn.

Lot: The term Lot refers to an area within the Cemetery containing several burial spaces.

Marker: The term Marker shall mean a memorial of granite, marble or bronze; flush with the surface of the ground.
Monument: The term Monument shall mean a tombstone or memorial of granite or marble or similar stone which extends above the surface of the ground.

Owner(s): The owner is the person(s) to whom the Cemetery has conveyed a Burial Right, or a person who has acquired such rights by transfer in accordance with the rules of the Cemetery.

Space: The term Space shall apply to a space of sufficient size (approximately 4 ft. by 10 ft.) to accommodate a full burial, or one full burial and a maximum of three cremains, or, if no full burial, up to four urns containing cremains. A Half-Space is approximately four feet by five feet, and can accommodate up to two urns.

II. Purchase of Burial Spaces

  • Persons desiring to purchase Burial Rights should visit the Cemetery. Cemetery personnel will aid prospective purchasers in making a site selection and may enter into a Purchase Agreement which will describe the number and location of the Burial Right(s) purchased. The Purchaser shall make payment at that time, or arrange a time-payment plan, and a receipt shall be provided. No Certificate of Burial Right shall be provided to the purchaser until the purchase price has been paid in full, and no burial shall take place without the certificate. A Certificate of Burial Right(s) shall be delivered or mailed to Purchaser within 15 days from the time of final payment in full.
  • The Cemetery may “buy-back” Burial Rights, when funds are available, as follows:
  • Within 5 business days after the purchase, and upon surrender of the Certificate of Burial Rights, the Cemetery will refund the full purchase price.
  • Thereafter, the Cemetery will buy back the Burial Right to a burial space, paying 80% of the price paid by the original purchaser.
  • The Cemetery will accept from the burial rights owner the gift of any unused burial space(s). Such a gift may be a tax-deductible donation for the owner.
  • The laws of the State of Oregon govern the descent of title to Burial Right(s) as well as other matters pertaining to assignments, conveyances, devises, trust deeds, and alienability. The Cemetery shall not be bound by such transfers unless and until a copy of such document has been presented to it and such change has been recorded on the books of the Cemetery. The Burial Rights to a Burial Space in which there are no burials nor inurnments may be transferred to a new owner, as stated above, providing the original Certificate of Burial Rights is submitted to the Cemetery together with a proper written transfer agreement, and payment of a $100 transfer fee.

III. Burials

  • One full-sized (4’X10′) Burial Space can accommodate no more than one full burial, and up to three additional cremains, or up to four cremains if there is no casket in that space. One half-sized (4’X5′) Burial Space can accommodate a maximum of two cremains. Each burial, whether a casket or cremains, must have a permanent marker. When a second or subsequent urn is buried on an existing plot, all notices contained in these rules apply, and an additional administrative fee of $100 shall be paid to the Cemetery.
  • Outer burial vaults or liners are required for all casket burials to protect the casket from displacement and to stabilize the ground for long-term maintenance.
  • Outer burial containers shall meet or exceed the following requirements:
    • Concrete grave liners will be made of concrete, steel reinforced, with a one-piece concrete lid, being able to withstand a minimum top load weight of 2,500 lbs. They are to be unpainted with at least one drain hole in the base.
    • Vaults are to be of steel-reinforced concrete, top sealing with a one-piece lid, being able to withstand a minimum top load weight of 2,500 lbs.
  • Outer containers for Urns must be crush proof, or a crush-proof urn may be used, strong enough to withstand the weight of maintenance equipment.
  • Grave Liners and Vaults must be covered by not less than 30 inches of soil and urns must be covered by not less than 18 inches of soil, and the site shall be left level with the surrounding ground.
  • The Burial Right owner shall pay all expenses related to opening and closing of graves.
  • All aspects of all interments shall be governed by Oregon Revised Statutes and these rules. In consideration for the families of the decedent, the cemetery requires authorization for interment 48 hours before the burial is to take place. This will allow time to verify ownership, locate and mark the grave site and set up the work schedule for excavation, so there won’t be a conflict with other services. An Interment Authorization must be completed prior to any interment in the cemetery. All excavations for interment must be made by a licensed, insured and bonded contractor.
  • No disinterment shall be allowed except by consent of the Cemetery and with consent of the additional persons or agencies as specified in Oregon laws. All legal permits must be presented to Cemetery officials, and authorizations signed by the legal owners as specified in Oregon Statutes, at least 48 hours before work begins. The work of disinterment shall be done under supervision of the Cemetery by persons designated by the Cemetery.
  • All vendors and contractors must provide written proof of insurance and bonding before entering the Cemetery for placement of products or performance of services.
  • The Cemetery accepts no liability for delivery, setting, and quality of material, workmanship or longevity of the outer burial containers placed or installed in the Cemetery.

IV. The Cemetery Grounds

  • No new grave markers shall be placed above the surface level of the ground. No permanent grave marker or monument shall be installed in the Cemetery until; (a) written approval has been obtained from the Cemetery and, (b) the exact placement location has been established and marked by Cemetery personnel.
  • All landscape maintenance of Burial Spaces shall be planned and implemented by Cemetery personnel. The Cemetery personnel may, at any time, enter upon the Burial Spaces to keep them neatly mowed, and to remove grass, weeds, plants, flowers, rocks, bricks, boards, fencing and memorabilia when they become unsightly, unsafe, or conflict with normal maintenance. The Cemetery may dispose of such items in any manner the Cemetery deems to be in the best interests of the Cemetery. Nothing herein contained shall obligate the Cemetery to render such service without compensation therefore.
  • Burial Space owners may place fresh flowers and memorabilia (excluding candles and glass or ceramics) within approximately six inches of a gravestone. The placement of fencing, plantings, memorabilia, rocks, bricks, or metal or glass of any type elsewhere on any grave is not permitted. Cemetery staff shall remove and dispose of cut flowers and memorabilia when they become unsightly or are unsafe.
  • The cemetery from time to time may plot out or alter roads or walks or make such rules and regulations for government of the cemetery as it may deem requisite and proper to secure and promote the general welfare of the cemetery.

V. General

  • Any disorderly person who willfully violates any of these rules and regulations of the Cemetery may be ejected from the grounds. Failure to leave upon request may result in Criminal Trespassing charges. All persons shall be held liable under law for any damage done by them, and damage to property may result in Criminal Mischief charges.
  • The speed limit within the Cemetery is 5 miles per hour. Driving over or between headstones is forbidden. Leashed dogs (leash in hand) are permitted on the road only, and pet owners must pick up feces deposited by pets. No liquor is permitted on the Cemetery property.
  • Owners of Burial Rights must notify the Cemetery of any changes of contact information (name change, address, phone numbers and email addresses) to facilitate possible future communication, and any transfer of ownership as outlined in Purchase of Burial Spaces (section 2), rule 3.