(A)   All abandoned lots or parts of lots located in any city-owned cemeteries shall revert to the city. An ABANDONED LOT is defined as a lot or any part thereof that has not been used or has not been conveyed in the records of the City Clerk for a period of 50 years.
   (B)   Before any lot or portion thereof shall be deemed to have been abandoned and to have reverted to the city, the following procedure must be followed.
      (1)   Notice to deed holder. A notice shall be prepared naming the last known cemetery lot deed holder, describing the particular cemetery lot it is alleged has been abandoned, and stating that unless the deed holder, their successors, or assigns, presents the deed or other appropriate evidence of ownership to the office of the City Manager, within 45 days from the date of the first publication of the notice in a newspaper of general circulation within the city, that the cemetery lot or portion thereof will be deemed to be abandoned and the title to the lot will revert to the city free and clear of any claims, right, or title of the deed holder. Said notice will be published in its entirety three consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation within the city. In addition, the notice will be mailed to the last known address (if known) of the deed holder.
      (2)   Determination of abandonment; sale or conveyance. After the 45 days’ prescribed notice has expired, the City Council will then determine if the lot or portion thereof is to be deemed abandoned. If so, the city’s cemetery records will be amended to reflect that the lot has been abandoned and the title vested in the city. The city will then have the right to sell or convey the lot or portion thereof to a new deed holder who will take title possession free and clear of any right of the previous deed holder or their heirs, assigns, or successors.
      (3)   Options of lot owners. In the event that a person presents sufficient evidence to show they are the rightful owner of the cemetery lot or part thereof that is in question, they shall have the right to have the records of the City Clerk updated to reflect that they are the current owner of said lot or parts thereof. Alternatively, if the rightful owner does not desire to use said cemetery lot or part thereof, they may elect to sell their lot(s) in a private transaction or donate the lot(s) back to the city. This provision shall not require the city to buy back any cemetery lots or parts thereof if the city does not choose to do so.
(Ord. 1925, passed 12-8-2020)