This post will be the fourth in our series looking at the rulemaking proposed on December 9, 2015 on “Cemetery Annual Financial Reports; Commercial Crime Coverage; and Permanent Maintenance Fund Contributions.” Today’s post looks at permanent maintenance fund collections and contributions.
Under the proposed rulemaking, the deposit requirements for the permanent maintenance fund have been clarified to require deposits shall be made at least quarterly. This provision is viewed as a net positive for cemeteries, many of whom have been waiting until the end of the year to make their fund payments, as it prevents them from losing potential interest and gains.
The proposed rulemaking also addresses circumstances for which there is no existing guidance, namely situations where a cemetery receives payments in installments for a lot, plot, etc. In such circumstances, the full amount must be deposited in either lump sum at the time the contract is signed and initial payment is received, or by depositing 10% of the initial payment and all subsequent payments until the full amount required is reached. Clearly this is very beneficial for cemeteries that rely on pre-need sales.
This last provision had garnered a lot of attention since the initial draft of the rule required that the full amount of the permanent maintenance fund contribution be deposited when the installment sale was first made. This was viewed as being very detrimental to pre-need sales, and the Division of Cemeteries worked closely with industry leaders on a compromise, resulting in the above provision.