Vero residents vote to protect cemetery, parks

VERO BEACH — As the final chapter of an uproar that erupted over the proposed privatization of the city-owned Crestlawn Cemetery, voters overwhelmingly approved an amendment to the Vero Beach city charter limiting the sale, lease or transfer of 26 parcels of land.

Voters approved the amendment 4,288 to 1,223.

After this move by the electorate, Vero Beach officials will be prohibited from selling, trading or otherwise disposing of various properties without a subsequent referendum of city voters approving the action.

The effort to get the measure on the ballot was spearheaded by Councilwoman Amelia Graves and former councilman Ken Daige. Daige and Graves worked with city staff to research, document and clarify the boundaries and legal names of the various parcels.

The referendum was supported by veterans’ groups, by neighborhood groups, by long-time residents and by those who have family members interred at Crestlawn Cemetery.

The City Council voted in August on the final list that appeared on Tuesday’s ballot. The parcels include some of the city’s most iconic parks such as Royal Palm Pointe, Humiston Beach Park, Jaycee Beach Park and Pocahantas Park, plus the power plant and wastewater treatment plant utility sites, the Vero Beach marina and Veterans Memorial Island Sanctuary.

The city-owned properties included in the charter amendment are:

  • Crestlawn Cemetery
  • Old City Nursery
  • Pocahantas Park
  • Humiston Beach Park
  • Jaycee Beach Park
  • South Beach Park
  • Alex MacWilliam Park
  • Riverside Park
  • Veterans Memorial Island Sanctuary
  • Troy Moody Park
  • Municipal Marina
  • Young Park
  • Bob Summers Park
  • Power Plant site
  • Wastewater Treatment Plant site
  • Block Manor Park
  • Charles Park
  • Jacoby Park
  • Alex MacWilliam Boat Basin Park
  • Piece of Pie Park
  • Pine Terrace Park
  • Royal Palm Pointe Park
  • Vero Beach Park
  • Lake Rose
  • Leisure Square
  • Michael Field

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