Reducing redundancy is a goal.

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Beacon Hill Is Dying To Improve Mortuary Regulation (Among Other Things)

June 16, 2015

One of Governor Charlie Baker's foundational campaign promises last year was to sponsor a complete analysis and overhaul of the state's welter of business regulations.

One business sector - the funeral industry - is responding like, well, a bat out of hell.

The Board of Registration in Embalming and Funeral Directing is one of dozens of state panels tasked by Baker to revamp -- and hopefully improve -- how they regulate business. The board held a listening session in Boston Tuesday and heard concerns about redundant rules, compliance with federal laws and consumer protection issues.

Jack McDonough's family has owned a funeral home in Lowell for five generations. He's concerned that as cremation becomes more popular, a lack of regulation of crematories could lead to tragic results

"There really isn't any place for a consumer or a cemetery corporation to really ask or really talk to about it. And it kinda scares me," said McDounough. "I mean, I always thought there was. I assumed there was."

Sandy Ward from the Funeral Consumer Alliance of Western Massachusetts, likes that Baker's order mandates any new regulations be in plain English and says the state isn't throwing out the current rule book, but addressing some needed changes:

Says Ward, "What we're doing is adjusting. The book is the part of the book I'm looking at, 66 pages of detailed regulation, it looks like it needs editing and refreshing,"

The funeral industry is just one of dozens of regulatory jurisdictions the Baker administration is addressing.

 


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