Funeral Director of Excellence Speaks on Illinois Preneed Funeral Mess-YourFuneralGuy

4 May

Illinois Funeral Directors have had a 59 Million Dollar Funeral scandal.

Illinois Funeral Directors have had a 59 Million Dollar Funeral scandal.

Anyone speaking excellently on a disaster should always be welcome. In the case of the Illinois Funeral Directors Association Preneed Funeral Mess both Funeral Directors and the public have been hurt.  Any time people misappropriate  funeral funds some one has to pay. MarsellusM710 offers a unique perspective. Let me say he is not one of the IFDA bad Guys.

Funeral Guy and Friends,

I would like to direct your attention to a press release that I found on the Illinois Comptrollers website trying to find the SB1682 in its entirety as it has not been posted on the IL legislative site over the weekend.  Funeral Guy, you need to link this to your blog, please. www.comptroller.state.il.us/newsrelease

Anyway, I read the news release from his (Hynes) office dated 4/30/09, and I owe an apology to Nancy Nelson of AARP. she states and I quote “Pre-paying for a funeral in Illinois shouldn’t mean buyer beware” she further states “AARP strongly supports efforts to improve consumer protections and put an end to fraudulent and abusive practices in the pre-pay funeral industry”.  I tip my hat to her for still having confidence in the majority of us who do our jobs. I made an error in judging her on her comments.

Funeral Directors lost trust in their Association and the public lst trust in Funeral Directors.

Funeral Directors lost trust in their Association and the public lst trust in Funeral Directors.

Had her comments in this release been in the Springfield State Journal-Register as such,  I probably would not have reacted like I did to her comments as quoted in the SJ-R, nothing against Mr. Rushton, who has been very fair to us in funeral service in his articles and has done a great job in covering the issues.

I hope all of the consumer groups understand that it was  the failure of a the Cemetery Care and Burial Trust Div. of Hynes’ office who oversees the funeral and burial funds act , to act properly and swiftly against the third party / Corporate fiduciary under its watch when its auditors knew it was tanking and allowing more time for the financial catastrophe. If they would have called it when they saw it, It could have been dealt with better because the write down would have been less, and we could have had a housecleaning at IFDA sooner.

The Comptroller wants to punish us who have $500,000.00 in trust under a trustee license from his office and managed those funds well. ( and kept those funds from the IFDA Services, Inc’s. portfolio), are being penalized and not allowed to have any in house control of any funds.  No skin off my hide really, someone else gets to compile the report for me come next March 15 to turn in to Mr. Hynes’ office.  The good business people loose another rein in having direct control of the investment of funds due to the actions of a few.

IFDA Defrauded 59 million then came up on the wrong side of funeral legislation in Illinois istockphoto picture of IL Statehouse

IFDA Defrauded 59 million then came up on the wrong side of funeral legislation in Illinois istockphoto picture of IL Statehouse

IL Rep. Lisa Dugan (D) of Bradley, IL wants to “act quickly to to put these important consumer protections in place”.  I say not so fast, sister!
If the opportunity to overhaul the whole Funeral and Burial Funds Act  is before us, I say lets take line by line and truly overhaul and fix it. It still lacks some protections and teeth on the front end of the act, where most infractions occur, as Mr. Wm. McNary of the Citizen Action/Illinois points out. Mr. Hynes states in the release that “his office will push for additional reforms….”.  there are some other loopholes that need addressing.
There is a newly formed House Funeral and Burial Pre-Arrangement Investigation Task Force that needs to be heard from.  My biggest concern as a funeral home owner is that there will be a piling on of unnecessary regulation.

Rushing this legislation through is nothing short of having Mr. Hynes look good for his potential run at the Governors office or U.S. Senator. I really wish someone would take him to task on the actions of his people not to respond to the crisis sooner. Can you say ACCOUNTABILITY?  As I have said before, had any one funeral home entity done harm to its’ Trust accounts, his office would have been on it like flies on stink and placed in receivership, no questions asked.

It sounds like I’m taking a verbal swing at the Comptroller. Not really, I just would like to know why he and his people in the CCBT Div. didn’t respond to their discovery sooner. In the IOC’s defense though,  I’m sure the former Attorney for the IFDA Board, Mr. Cullen and  former Ex.Dir. Mr. Dixon kept them at bay along with the others in the IFDA hierarchy. (Cook’n the Books ENRON Style)

I can live with the proposed changes. We all knew this would be coming.  It is still a hindsight, knee jerk reaction.

Respectfully,
MarsellusM710

This post contains the opinions of MarsellusM710, not Your Funeral Guy( Funeral Director IL &VA.)

Funeral Industry|Funeral- blog byYour Funeral Guy

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