Establishes the veterans' cremains act, allowing funeral directors to grant qualified veterans' organizations the right to receive the cremains of a veteran which has not been claimed by a relative or friend of the deceased within one year after cremation.
Ayes (61): Adams, Addabbo, Alesi, Aubertine, Bonacic, Breslin, DeFrancisco, Diaz, Dilan, Duane, Farley, Flanagan, Foley, Fuschillo, Golden, Griffo, Hannon, Hassell-Thomps, Huntley, Johnson C, Johnson O, Klein, Krueger, Kruger, Lanza, Larkin, LaValle, Leibell, Libous, Little, Marcellino, Maziarz, McDonald, Montgomery, Morahan, Nozzolio, Onorato, Oppenheimer, Padavan, Parker, Peralta, Perkins, Ranzenhofer, Robach, Saland, Sampson, Savino, Schneiderman, Serrano, Seward, Skelos, Smith, Squadron, Stachowski, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousins, Thompson, Valesky, Volker, Winner, Young
Excused (1): Espada
BILL NUMBER: S6840A REVISED 03/11/10
TITLE OF BILL :
An act to amend the not-for-profit corporation law, in relation to disposition of unclaimed cremated remains of a veteran
To ensure the cremains (the remains of a cremated body) of veterans are properly and respectfully disposed of if not claimed, allowing for proper acknowledgement of those who have served our nation.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS :
Section one re-letters paragraph (j) of section 1517 of the not-for-profit corporations law to paragraph (k), and a new paragraph (j) is added. The new paragraph (j) provides that qualified tax exempt veterans organizations or federally chartered veteran's service organization will be given the right to receive and respectfully dispose of the cremated remains of the unclaimed bodies of veterans, if such remains have not been claimed by a relative or friend of the deceased within a designated period after cremation has taken place.
Millions of American service men and women have fought for the united States in two World Wars, Korea, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf, the ongoing wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and numerous other small conflicts. Those same service men and women have also carried out humanitarian relief projects on behalf of the united States in every comer of the world. Sadly, however, the remains of some of those heroes sit unclaimed and forgotten on the shelves in funeral homes, hospitals, prisons, crematories and other facilities. (See, e.g., "Abandoned cremains of veterans laid to rest," TEANECK SUBURBANITE, August 20, 2009.) It is fitting we provide a way for the remains of those lost heroes to receive the respectful and honorable interment they deserve.
In 2009, the states of New Jersey and Illinois enacted laws concerning the final disposition of the unclaimed remains of veterans' bodies after cremation. Sadly, New York has not yet adopted a similar policy to allow the brothers and sisters in service of our fallen heroes the ability to serve their former comrades one final time. It is time New York adopts the same policy.
By allowing veteran's organizations to carry out the proper burial procedures, rather than allow the cremated remains of American veterans to lay abandoned for decades, we pay due respect to those who have served to protect the life and liberty of this nation.
LEGISLATIVE HISTORY :
None. This is a new bill.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS :
EFFECTIVE DATE : This act shall take effect November 11, 2010.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 6840--A IN SENATE February 12, 2010 ___________Introduced by Sens. PARKER, ADDABBO, PERKINS -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Veter- ans, Homeland Security and Military Affairs -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the not-for-profit corporation law, in relation to disposition of unclaimed cremated remains of a veteran THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Paragraph (j) of section 1517 of the not-for-profit corpo- ration law is relettered paragraph (k) and a new paragraph (j) is added to read as follows: (J) DISPOSITION OF UNCLAIMED CREMATED REMAINS OF A VETERAN. (1) PURSU- ANT TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF PARAGRAPH (I) OF THIS SECTION, IF, UPON COMPLETION OF THE CREMATION PROCESS, THE CEMETERY CORPORATION HAS NOT BEEN INSTRUCTED TO ARRANGE FOR THE INTERMENT, ENTOMBMENT, INURNMENT OR SCATTERING OF THE CREMAINS OF AN INDIVIDUAL KNOWN TO BE A VETERAN AND PROVIDED A DILIGENT EFFORT HAS BEEN MADE TO LOCATE AND NOTIFY THE NEXT OF KIN OR AUTHORIZING AGENT THAT SIGNED THE CREMATION AUTHORIZATION FOR THE DECEASED VETERAN, AFTER A PERIOD OF ONE HUNDRED TWENTY DAYS FROM THE DATE OF THE CREMATION, WHERE THE AUTHORIZING AGENT HAS NOT INSTRUCTED THE CEMETERY CORPORATION TO ARRANGE FOR THE FINAL DISPOSITION OF THE CREMAINS OR CLAIMED THE CREMAINS, THE CEMETERY CORPORATION MAY ALSO DISPOSE OF THE CREMAINS IN ANY MANNER PERMITTED BY THIS SECTION OR BY RELINQUISHING POSSESSION OF VETERANS' CREMAINS FOR DISPOSITION BY A VETERANS' ORGANIZATION THAT QUALIFIES AS A SECTION 501(C)(3) OR 501(C)(19) TAX EXEMPT ORGANIZATION UNDER THE INTERNAL REVENUE CODE, OR A FEDERALLY CHARTERED VETERANS' SERVICE ORGANIZATION. THE CEMETERY CORPO- RATION, HOWEVER, SHALL KEEP A PERMANENT RECORD IDENTIFYING THE VETERANS' ORGANIZATION RECEIVING THE REMAINS AND THE SITE DESIGNATED FOR FINAL DISPOSITION BY THE ORGANIZATION. THE METHOD OF DISPOSITION SHALL BE MADE PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION AND SHALL BE DIRECTED TO A SECTION OF A CEME- TERY CORPORATION WHERE VETERANS ARE MEMORIALIZED BY A VETERAN'S MARKER IF ELIGIBLE, A VETERANS' SECTION OF A CEMETERY CORPORATION OR A VETER-EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD15333-03-0 S. 6840--A 2
ANS' CEMETERY IF THE DECEASED VETERAN IS ELIGIBLE FOR INTERMENT IN SUCH A MANNER. SUCH INTERMENT, ENTOMBMENT, INURNMENT OR SCATTERING OF THE CREMAINS OF AN INDIVIDUAL KNOWN TO BE A VETERAN BY SUCH A VETERANS' ORGANIZATION SHALL OCCUR WITHIN SIXTY DAYS. THE AUTHORIZING AGENT SHALL BE RESPONSIBLE FOR REIMBURSING THE CEMETERY CORPORATION OR THE VETERANS' ORGANIZATION FOR ALL REASONABLE EXPENSES INCURRED IN DISPOSING OF THE CREMAINS. UPON DISPOSITION OF THE CREMAINS, THE CEMETERY CORPORATION AND THE VETERANS' ORGANIZATION AS DEFINED IN THIS SECTION SHALL BE DISCHARGED FROM ANY LEGAL OBLIGATION OR LIABILITY CONCERNING THE CREMAINS. EXCEPT WITH THE EXPRESS WRITTEN PERMISSION OF THE AUTHORIZING AGENT, NO PERSON SHALL: (I) DISPOSE OF CREMAINS IN A MANNER OR IN A LOCATION SO THAT THE CREMAINS ARE COMMINGLED WITH THOSE OF ANOTHER PERSON. THIS PROHIBITION SHALL NOT APPLY TO THE SCATTERING OF CREMAINS AT SEA, BY AIR, OR IN AN AREA LOCATED IN A CEMETERY AND USED EXCLUSIVELY FOR THOSE PURPOSES; AND (II) PLACE CREMAINS OF MORE THAN ONE PERSON IN THE SAME TEMPORARY CONTAINER OR URN. (2) FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS PARAGRAPH, "DILIGENT EFFORT" SHALL MEAN A REASONABLE EFFORT, AND INCLUDES A CERTIFIED LETTER, DELIVERY RECEIPT REQUESTED, MAILED TO THE NEXT OF KIN OR AUTHORIZING AGENT THAT SIGNED THE CREMATION AUTHORIZATION. S 2. This act shall take effect November 11, 2010.