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of lot owners, be insufficient for such purposes, the directors of the corporation, not oftener than once in any year and for such purposes only, may levy a tax of two dollars on the owners of each lot, or, with the written consent of two-thirds of the lot owners, or with the concurrent vote of a majority of the lot owners, at an annual meeting, or at a special meeting duly called for such purpose, may levy a tax on the lot owners at a rate not exceeding five dollars for each lot of average value proportionately to the prices at which the lots were respectively sold by the corporation. Notice of such tax shall be served on the lot owners or where two or more persons are owners of the same lot, on one of them, either personally, or by leaving it at his residence with a person of mature age and discretion, or by mail, if he resides in a city, town or village where the office of the corporation is not located. If such tax remain unpaid for more than thirty days after the service of such notice, the president and secretary of the corporation may issue a warrant to the treasurer of the corporation, requiring him to collect such tax in the same manner as school collectors are required to collect school taxes; and such treasurer shall have the same power and be subject to the same liabilities in executing such warrant as a collector of school taxes has or is subject to by law in executing a warrant for the collection of school taxes. If the taxes so levied remain unpaid for five years, the amount thereof with interest shall be a lien on the unused portion of the lot which is subject to such tax and no portion of the lot so taxed shall be used by the owner thereof for burial purposes, while any such tax remains unpaid. (As amended by chap. 477 of 1897, § 1, and chap. 761 of 1900.)
$53. Expenses of improving vacated lot.-Whenever a person having a lot in the cemetery of a cemetery corporation shall vacate the same by a removal of all the dead buried therein, and leave such lot in a broken and unimproved condition for a period of one month or more from the date of such removal, the corporation may grade, cut, fill or otherwise change the surface thereof, for the improvement of the lot and the general improvement of the cemetery grounds, without reducing the area of the lot. The expense of such improvement, not exceeding ten dollars, shall be chargeable to such lot. If the owners of such lot shall not, within six months after such expense has been incurred, repay to the corporation the amount chargeable to the lot, the corporation may sell the lot at public auction upon the cemetery grounds, previous notice
of such sale having been posted at the main entrance of the cemetery, and mailed to the owners of such lot at their last-known postoffice address, at least ten days prior to the day of sale, and shall pay the surplus, if any, of the proceeds of such sale over such amount, on demand, to the owners of such lot.
§ 54. Certificates of indebtedness.— If a cemetery corporation be indebted for lands purchased for cemetery purposes, or for services rendered or materials furnished in preserving or improving its cemetery, the directors thereof, by the concurring vote of a majority of their whole number, may, with the consent of the creditor to whom any such indebtedness is owing, issue certificates under the corporate seal, signed by the president and secretary, for the amount of such indebtedness, or a part thereof, payable at such times and drawing such a rate of interest and in such sums as may be agreed on with such creditor; but the amount of any certificate shall not be less than one hundred dollars, nor the rate of interest higher than the rate authorized by law. The certificate shall be transferable by delivery, unless otherwise provided on the face thereof; and the directors shall keep in the books of the corporation. an exact and true account of the number and amount of such certificates, the persons to whom issued, the time of maturity and the rate of interest. A separate account shall be kept in the books of the corporation of the certificates issued for the purchase-money of lands, and the certificates issued for debts incurred in preserving and improving the cemetery. The directors shall set aside from the proceeds of sales of the use of lots and plats, such sums as they may deem necessary to pay said certificate at their maturity. Until such certificates are paid each holder thereof shall be entitled at all meetings of the corporation, to one vote for each one hundred dollars. of such indebtedness held by him. The certificates issued pursuant to this section shall not be a lien upon any lot belonging to a lot
§ 55. Certificates of stock heretofore issued.— If a cemetery corporation, incorporated under a law repealed by this chapter, has converted its outstanding indebtedness or certificates of indebtedness into certificates of stock, in pursuance of law, no interest shall accrue to the holders of such stock, but they shall receive annually or semi-annually a dividend thereon for their proportional part of the entire surplus or net receipts of the corporation over and above current expenses; or if the proportion of the net receipts or surplus
which stockholders shall be entitled to receive shall have been fixed by agreement at the time of issuing such stock, such stockholders shall be entitled to receive dividends in accordance with such agreeSuch certificates of stock shall be transferable only on the books of the corporation on the surrender of the certificate, unless otherwise provided on the face thereof, and on every such surrender a new certificate of stock shall be issued to the person to whom the same has been transferred; and the holders of such stock shall be entitled, in person or by proxy, to one vote for every share thereof, at each meeting of the corporation. A register of the stock issued by the corporation shall be kept by its directors showing the date of issue, the number of shares, the par value thereof, the name of each person to whom issued, the number of the certificates therefor; and all transfers of such stock shall be noted and entered in such register, and the certificates surrendered shall be deemed canceled by the issue of a new certificate, and the surrendered certificate shall be destroyed. Any director may become the holder or transferee of such stock for his own individual use or benefit. No such stock shall be a lien on the lot of any individual lot owner within the cemetery limits; and no other or greater liability of the corporation issuing such stock shall be created or deemed to exist than may be necessary to enforce the faithful application of the surplus or net receipts of the corporation to and among the holders of the stock in the manner hereinbefore specified.
A cemetery which has heretofore issued such certificates of stock is a membership corporation and not a stock corporation.
§ 56. Private cemetery corporations. Seven or more persons may become a private cemetery corporation by setting off for a private cemetery inclosed real property, to the extent of not more than three acres, and by electing at a meeting of the proprietors of the real property so set off, at which not less than seven shall be present, three of their number to be directors, to hold office for five years. The chairman and secretary of such meeting shall make, sign and acknowledge, and file in the office of the clerk of the county in which such real property is situated, a certificate containing the name of the corporation, a description of the lands so purchased or set apart, and the names of the directors. No such cemetery shall be located within one hundred rods of any dwelling-house without the written consent of the owner thereof.
Additional lands may be acquired by a private cemetery corporation to an extent not to exceed three acres; but no additional lands so purchased or otherwise acquired shall be used for the purpose of burial within three hundred feet of any dwelling without the written. consent of the owner thereof.
$57. 57. Family cemetery corporations. Any person may by deed or devise, dedicate land to be used exclusively for a family cemetery, or the executors, administrators or trustees of a deceased person may, with the written authority of all the surviving heirs, next of kin, devisees and legatees of the deceased person, executed in person or by attorney, or if infants, by general guardian, dedicate lands of such deceased person to be used exclusively for such purpose, or purchase with the funds of the estate under their control, suitable lands therefor, and may pay to the directors of such cemetery money or other personal property as hereafter provided. The quantity of land so dedicated shall not exceed three acres, nor be located within one hundred rods of a dwelling-house, without the consent of the owner. The instrument dedicating such land shall describe the same, may appoint directors to manage such cemetery, may direct the manner of choosing successors to the directors, and may grant to such directors and their successors money or personal property to be a fund for maintaining, improving and embellishing such cemetery, in accordance with the deed or will of such person, or the written authority of such heirs, next of kin, devisees and legatees. The instrument dedicating land for a family cemetery, together with the authority, if any, of the heirs, next of kin, devisees and legatees of a deceased person, shall be filed in the office of the county clerk of each county in which such cemetery is to be situated. A fund created by will for the purpose of maintaining, improving and embellishing such a cemetery shall not exceed ten per cent of the clear value of the estate of the testator in excess of his debts and liabilities, other than legacies.
The directors shall, before entering on their duties, file in the office of the clerk of each county, in which such cemetery is situated, a written acceptance of their appointment; and thereon such directors and their successors shall be a corporation by the name expressed in the instrument dedicating such land. Such directors and their successors, before receiving any property, money or funds for improving, maintaining and embellishing the cemetery under their charge, shall execute to the surrogate of the county in which
§§ 61-63 such real property is situated a bond with sureties approved by him, in a penalty of twice the principal sum of the fund placed in their charge, conditioned for the faithful preservation and application thereof, according to the rules, directions or by-laws, prescribed in the instrument under which their appointment was made, and renew their bond or execute a new bond whenever required so to do by such surrogate. At least once in each year, and oftener if required by the surrogate, they shall file with him their account of receipts and expenditures, on account of the fund in their hands, together with vouchers for all disbursements.
§ 61. Lot owners in unincorporated cemeteries may determine upon incorporating under this article.-Not less than three owners of lots in an unincorporated cemetery may cause a notice to be posted in at least six conspicuous places in the city, town or village in which such cemetery is located, and published once in each week for three successive weeks in a newspaper, if any, published in such municipality, stating that at a time and place specified in such notice, a meeting of the owners of lots in such cemetery, shall be held to determine upon the question of incorporating such cemetery, pursuant to article three of the membership corporations law. (Added by chap. 480 of 1900.)
§ 62. Meeting to determine such question.- Such meeting shall be held at a convenient place in the city, town or village in which such cemetery is located, not less than twenty-five nor more than thirty days after the first posting and publication of the notice of the meeting. At such meeting every owner of a lot in such cemetery, represented thereat in person or by proxy, shall be entitled to one vote, for each lot owned by him. Any owner of a lot in such cemetery, may by written proxy, duly acknowledged, designate a person to represent him at such meeting, and the person so designated shall upon the presentation of such proxy to the chairman of the meeting, have all the powers of a lot owner present thereat. The persons entitled to vote at such meeting shall select a chairman and secretary thereof, and shall determine by ballot the question of whether or not the owners of lots in such cemetery shall organize as a corporation, pursuant to article three of the membership corporations law. The ballots in favor of such proposition shall have the word "yes" thereon, and the ballots against shall have the word "no" thereon. (Added by chap. 480 of 1900.)
§ 63. Incorporation pursuant to meeting; conveyance of property to corporation.- If a majority of the ballots are in favor of such proposition, the persons entitled to vote at such meeting shall select three owners of lots in such cemetery to incorporate in pursuance of article three of the membership corporations law, and the provision of such article shall be applicable to the formation and management of such corporation, except that three persons may incorporate, and the corporation shall not be required to have more