Wednesday May 27 2009
Cemetery debate continues
By: Tom Durkin
Community tribe considers counter-offer
Concerned Colfax residents met with Colfax-Todds Valley Consolidated Tribe members to discuss how to purchase the Colfax Indian Cemetery. About a dozen people gathered on Saturday morning to make plans to acquire the property from the Colfax Cemetery District. Colfax resident Kaari Groscup ran the meeting, methodically gaining support on core issues — always deferring to the tribe’s position to avoid seeking revenge or punishing the Colfax Cemetery District trustees and trying to buy the property for $100. The public sentiment has been that the district sell the cemetery for one dollar — or as one man put it, “a few beads.” However, the district wants $37,000 for property appraised at $80,000 to $100,000. Groscup is challenging the appraisal and is seeking an independent opinion from an appraisal expert on cemeteries and other special districts. Furthermore, Groscup has ordered a title search to determine when or if the tribe ever sold the cemetery to the district. The group also agreed to ask for Placer County Supervisor Jennifer Montgomery’s support at her next Colfax coffee meeting scheduled at 9 a.m. on June 10 at Evangeline’s. Saturday’s meeting was also a fundraiser for the cause. With the help of Colfax resident Sue Ghilotti, who tossed in $100, the group raised $121. Owner of the pharmacy building, Elan Vitkoff, vowed to continue to host free coffee-and-cookies community fundraisers for the tribe as well as other worthy causes every Saturday at 11 a.m.