It’s good to see that the City of Vernon is getting serious about the Pleasant Valley Cemetery.
Complaints rolled into city hall about weeds and dead grass last year and they began again this spring, but it was only on Monday that any concrete action was taken to address the issue.
A total of $70,000 will be spent on grass repairs this year but conditions have got so bad, it will take two years for the site to recover.
It wasn’t lost on council members that the controversy over the cemetery had given the city a public relations black eye.
“Those are taxpaying citizens resting there and it’s total disrespect that we allowed the cemetery to get to that level,” said Coun. Dalvir Nahal.
And while city staff were attempting to deal with a budget shortfall in 2015 when irrigation was reduced, they had to realize that less water would mean weeds and dead grass, which would create a public furor. Cemeteries are a motherhood issue because they are the last physical link between a loved one and their departed family member or friend.
Obviously, the $70,000 in grass repair this year is welcome but it can’t be a one-off investment.
It is absolutely necessary that the city assure residents that the Pleasant Valley Cemetery is a priority and a high level of maintenance standards will be followed in the years to come.