Cell phone tower revenue could help maintain cemeteries - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Cell phone tower revenue could help maintain cemeteries

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TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

A new proposal calls for using cell phone tower revenue in Toledo to pay for cemetery maintenance.

The man in charge of overseeing the maintenance of five city cemeteries in Toledo says making due on a "shoe-string budget" is nothing new.

But some say they want funding that will stick. "We're looking for Velcro," says Denny Garvin, Toledo Commissioner of Parks Recreation and Forestry.

That Velcro may come in the form of a proposal to have $15,000 dollars in annual lease revenue from a cell phone tower located at forest cemetery, to go directly into the city's cemetery maintenance fund.  Put simply, the city could start charging rent.

"It's public land, we've got a lot of people who are here visiting it with all due respect to all of those interred and their families here.  We need to get it as nice as we possibly can and keep it that way," says Garvin.

The revenue could provide some budget certainty on a year-to-year basis.

While the plan goes before city council for consideration, Garvin says the last thing the city can afford to do is let the cemeteries fall into a state of disrepair.

Garvin says cemetery maintenance involves much more than mowing the grass.

"It's the grass, the roads, the drainage it's retaining walls...it's fences, it's also shifting faulting stones and large monument markers," says Garvin.

"We can't do that if we can't shows respect to our honored dead, we have to have an honorable place in memory of those who are here."

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