Indigent burial bill passes West Virginia House

CHARLESTON (WOAY) – West Virginia’s House of Delegates has passed a bill to reduce the amount the state pays for indigent burials.

The House passed the bill Wednesday on a 65-33 vote. It now moves to the state Senate.

The bill would reduce the amount from $1,250 to $1,000.

According to the state Department of Health and Human Resources, the indigent burial program is expected to run out of money Feb. 28 – at least the sixth straight year that’s happened before the end of the fiscal year.

The DHHR has paid for 1,137 indigent burials since July 1. The state allocated about $2 million for them this fiscal year.

Taylor County Republican Amy Summers says the bill specifies a preference for less-expensive cremations over burials, which would allow the state to assist 400 more people.

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