Happy Holiday Season Everyone!! As everything becomes more hectic in our lives this time of year, it becomes even more busy around your Association office as well.
As everyone knows the E.D.R.S. (DAVE system) has been proceeding along and the electronic death certificate system is now in the training stage. Make sure you and your funeral home team is registered in the system, so you can go through the training stage of the system. Here is the link to get registered and sign up for the training if you have not done so yet. https://uat.davewv.vitalchek.com The system is to go live January 1, 2022.
The 2022 Legislative session is just around the corner, and there are several items that will be presented by the WV Board of Funeral of Funeral Service Examiners. There is legislation to implement a Funeral Director position only (not Funeral Service Licensee which includes embalmer abilities), to obtain this designation an individual would have to have a bachelor’s degree, work a two-year apprenticeship and take and pass the WV state board. A person with a funeral director’s license only would not be eligible to be a licensee in charge of a funeral establishment. To be a licensee in charge you would have to have your funeral service licensee designation (embalmer/funeral director), as well as the Certified Crematory Operator’s license (even if you use a third party for your cremations), and a license to sell pre-need funerals. With the additional requirements to be a licensee in charge, that individual would truly be responsible for all aspects that a funeral establishment offers. There has also been an increase in fees proposal, the legislature capped the proposal of the fees at twenty-five percent, which was significantly less than the original proposal. The WV Board of Funeral Service Examiners have not increased fees in almost fifteen years and feel the increase is needed to take a step to properly fund this office.
Remember to donate to the Association Political Action Committee, these funds are used to support the legislators that support our Association and our profession.
Upcoming events that the Association will be presenting in the months to come are:
*Certified Crematory Operator course on February 2, 2022 at the Association office.
*The annual West Virginia Funeral Directors and Crematory Operators Association Mid-Winter Advocacy Summit to be held February 3-4, 2022 at the Four Points by Sheraton in Charleston. This conference will have continuing education opportunities as well as a trip to speak to our legislators at the Capitol and a Legislative reception the evening of February 3rd.
The West Virginia Pre-need Funeral Trust continues to gain momentum with several new firms taking advantage of what the WV Pre-need Funeral Trust has to offer our members when it comes to their firms pre-need programs. With insurance companies freezing or lowering their growth rates and banks offering dismal rates on certificates of deposit, the Trust continues to be the best option in the state. If you are interested in what the Trust can do for you, contact me and I would be glad to explain the Trust to you and even train your team on our program.
Annual Dues notices will be sent out shortly. On the notice application, please list all funeral directors on your staff, as well as key personnel and everyone’s email addresses, so they can get all our informative blasts when they are sent out.
As always, your Association office is here when you need us. Please feel free to reach out to me for any assistance you may need. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New year.
Rob Kimes, Executive Director