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These guidelines are advisory in nature and set out general concepts rather than precise statutory language. The ICCFA is not recommending that the guidelines be codified into law as a whole. Instead, the guidelines are intended for consideration as a series of options to be selectively chosen by interested parties to address particular concerns.
Developed in 1998 by the Government and Legal Affairs Task Force of the
International Cemetery and Funeral Association
Zoning ordinances are developed and enforced under the local jurisdiction of cities, counties, towns, and villages. As a result, zoning requirements for cemetery usage can vary significantly from one local jurisdiction to another and courts will generally enforce such regulations unless they are clearly unreasonable, arbitrary, or capricious.
A number of zoning ordinances do not consider the diverse functions of cemetery acreage for mausoleum, crematory, flower shop, retail monument company, columbarium, mortuary, or chapel facilities. As a result, land dedicated and zoned for cemetery uses should be granted permits for clearly related functions such as the inurnment of cremated remains or the entombment of casketed human remains in a mausoleum crypt. Some zoning ordinances consider mausoleum usage separate and distinct from cemetery usage, requiring a special use permit or approval as a nonconforming use in order to proceed with construction. In addition, many jurisdictions have not enacted building standards for cemetery-related structures or inappropriately extend to mausoleums construction standards developed for other types of buildings.