FCAI Annual Member Meeting

We held our annual meeting on May 20, 2017, at the Boise Library! at Cole and Ustick (7557 W. Ustick Rd. in Boise). Special speaker Heather Felkel presented “Traditional Funerals and Other Options Up and Coming” before the business meeting.

Heather is the owner of the funeral consulting and death education company, An Informed Death, which aims to bring the funeral industry closer to the community. She is associated with the Idaho State Funeral Association, International Cemetery Cremation and Funeral Association, National Funeral Director Association, as well as the Cremation Association of North America. She is a licensed Funeral Director in the state of Idaho. She holds certifications as a Crematory Operator, Crematory Administrator, and Cremation Planner. She is also a Certified Celebrant and available to perform meaningful, personalized funeral services.

From the desk of the president

Greetings members, my name is Rose Thomas. I joined the board in 2015 and have been fulfilling the role of President for the past year. I was introduced to the Funeral Consumers’ Alliance of Idaho in 1998 and used Accent Funeral home for my Mother’s death. They did a wonderful job of answering questions and guiding me through the process. Sixteen years later, my husband died I received the same caring service from FCAI and Accent. I wanted to give back so I volunteered for the Board. As I have come to learn, FCA and FCAI are very busy. Not only does the Board provide education to the community, we also keep tabs on any changes in Idaho funeral law, attend the State Board of Morticians’ meetings twice a year, and gather price lists of regional funeral homes.

We are a great team, always looking for opportunities to bring you the most current information and changes. This year, we have two openings on the board. If you are interested, please let us know. We welcome the chance to get to know you.

Last July, Patricia Kolb finished her term and we scrambled to fill her oversized shoes. Thank you, Pat, for your fantastic service. Pat served as Treasurer and keep our dollars and cents in perfect order.

The financial audit was completed in August 2016 with no errors and all receipts and expenses accounted for; another example of the quality work performed by the outstanding member volunteer, Monica Perry and current treasurer, Sherri Rudai.

Thank you, Susan Randall and Monte Wilson, for your caring, service, and support to FCAI. It has been a pleasure working with you. Susan is ending a 6 year run that supported member services as FCAI’s membership secretary, she has done a wonderful job setting up new members and aiding transferring members. Monte filled the role of secretary, taking and publishing meeting minutes and keeping the board on task. A heartfelt “Thank You” your service in appreciated and a value to your community.

“Thank you”

A big “Thank You” to member, Audrie Cudahy and Sherri Rudai for volunteering their service to update the FCAI membership database. Audrie spent hours and hours looking up addresses, obituaries, and phone directories finding leads to missing members’ whereabouts. As a result, only 11 meeting notice fliers came back this year! Please let us, and Accent or Rosenau Funeral Homes know when your address changes.

Updated Idaho Price Survey Online

Our 2017 Funeral Home Comparative Price Survey is available. New this year, Funeral Homes with their General Price Lists (GPLs) online are indicated, with hyperlinks to their websites.

Death with Dignity?

The national Funeral Consumers Alliance and the Consumer Federation of America teamed up to report on SCI/Dignity Memorial's high prices and refusal to disclose them online.

Survey summary results

Service Corporation International (SCI), with its principle brand of "Dignity Memorial" is the nation’s largest and fastest growing provider of funerals and other “death-care” products. Having absorbed several of the largest death-care services in the past decade, it now operates more than a thousand funeral homes and cemeteries in the U.S. The FCA and CFA surveyed and compared the prices of 103 independent funeral homes and 35 SCI funeral homes in ten major metropolitan regions, and found SCI prices averaged 44 to almost 50% higher than independent businesses.

The full report from March, 2017, is available from the national Funeral Consumers Alliance website.

2017 - 2019 Contract renewal with Accent Funeral Home

Contract renegotiations with Randy Arnzen, owner of Accent Funeral Home in Meridian, came due March 17, 2017. An agreement was negotiated and renewal was signed through March 31, 2019 for FCAI members. Changes made in this renewal period:

Direct Cremation - Basic contract cost $755 (increased from $730)

Immediate Burial - Basic contract cost $780 if supply own casket (increased from $755); $1180 with minimum casket of mortuary’s choice

Do you need to update your Putting My House In Order Form?

Attention Members: PLEASE KEEP US UPDATED!

If you have moved since you have enrolled with FCAI YOU MUST UPDATE YOUR NEW ADDRESS WITH ACCENT OR ROSENEAU FUNERAL HOME AND FCAI MEMBERSHIP SECRETARY, so the funeral home knows where to pick you up!

The PMHIO is available in the membership packet, and online at our website. You still have time. Technically, you are not a member until Accent or Rosenau receives your PMHIO form. Both the addresses are on the top of the Putting My House In Order Form. Randy at Accent and Kevin at Rosenau are very good to work with, sometimes processing new members hours before their death, but this is the least desirable way for our service providers to perform their duties. Members need to complete the paperwork before the services are needed to have a win-win relationship with our providers. Thank you for your advanced consideration.

Only 2 Steps to becoming a member:

1) Make payment of $35 for a lifetime membership fee, or transfer in from another FCA affiliate.

2) Provide the Funeral Home information for Death Certificate by submitting the “Putting My House in Order” (PMHO) form in the membership packet or download online.

If you have not provided Accent or Rosenau with your “Putting My House in Order” paperwork, now is a good time. Or if the paperwork needs reviewed or updated, please do it now.

PMHIO Form is needed by the funeral home prior to death.

Membership by the Numbers

Fiscal Year New Transfers Deaths
2017 51 3 26
2016 61 7 25
2015 109 8 15
2014 43 9 16
2013 58 8 17

Another Volunteer Opportunity

Each year, FCAI needs a member volunteer to help with the annual financial audit. This audit usually takes less than 3 hours and is done with the help of our treasurer and an awesome volunteer, no experience necessary, you will learn on the job.

Welcome New Board Members for 2017-2018!

We had three nominations from the floor at the annual meeting, and the quorum of members present elected three new Board members: Heather Felkel, Charles Bonney and Brett Hearl. At the June meeting, Jody Mahnken resigned from the Board, and your new officers were elected:

Very special THANK YOUs

go out to our at-large advisor and historian Monica Perry, and brilliant web master, Tom von Alten. With their continued knowledge, experience and expertise your organization is able to maintain a higher level of exposure and professionalism. They are appreciated!

Thank you again to DUNIA Marketplace, for the donation of Fair Trade Coffee for our annual meeting. Dunia is located in historic Hyde Park Boise, at 1609 N. 13th St.

Industry oversight

In April, 2016, Governor Otter signed HB 482 into law, providing for a non-professional board members to be assigned to each of the Occupational Licensing Boards in Idaho. James R. Sommer was appointed to the Board of Morticians in September, 2016. FCAI has reached out to Mr. Sommer, and the Board of Morticians to make an introduction and possibly be added to the July meeting agenda, but as of yet no one from the BOM has responded to our greeting and request; so we have not had a conversation.

2016-2017 Community Outreach

If you are a members of an organization that would like a FCAI speaker just contact any one of the Board Members with the request. We are very happy to be invited to speak!

The Funeral Consumers Alliance of Idaho is a 501(c)(4) nonprofit corporation, an affiliate of the national Funeral Consumers Alliance. Donations to the FCAI are not tax-deductible.