THE COST of dying in Carlow is set rise, with the town council deciding to increase burial plot charges.
Meeting at its annual budget meeting, the local authority said the cost of providing for maintenance of burial grounds by the council is not sustainable and therefore proposed to increase charges.
A single plot was €150 and will now rise to €175. A double plot will increase from €300 to €350 and opening/closing will go from €300 to €325. The 2013 budget will provide expenditure on burial grounds of €124,194 with income of €35,000 which includes the new charges. Cllr Jennifer Murnane O'Connor said, 'I have concerns about the cost of plots going up. I had them last year as well. I feel by imposing an increase we are leaving people in need and those who are not in a position to pay high and dry. I am not happy about this at all.' Cllr Tom O'Neill was also highly critical of the plans, 'I totally disagree with an increase in burial costs. It is wrong. I was totally opposed to it last year and I am totally opposed to it this year.' However some councillors took a different view, Cllr Rody Kelly said, ' Last year, putting up the cost for people at a time like that would have been wrong. The cost is not exhorbitant.' Town engineer Brian O'Donovan explained, ' Compared to neighbouring counties, it is not a huge amount. There has been significant investment and we want to try and keep St. Mary's the way it is.' He added, 'While St Mary's does have capacity left, it is a priority of ours to seek new burial grounds now.'