45.51(10)(a)(a) Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, the application and admission of any applicant admitted under this section shall constitute a valid and binding contract between a member and the department. If a member dies leaving a relative that is entitled to an interest in the property of the member under the rules of intestate succession or a will the existence of which is made known to the commandant of the veterans home within 60 days of the member's death, the member's property shall constitute a part of the member's estate, except the commandant may distribute personal effects of nominal monetary value of a deceased member who is not survived by a member spouse to surviving relatives of the member who request the personal effects within a reasonable time after the member's death.
45.51(10)(b) (b) The department may manage, sell, lease, or transfer property passing to the state pursuant to this section or conveyed to it by members, defend and prosecute all actions concerning it, pay all just claims against it, and do all other things necessary for the protection, preservation, and management of the property. All expenditures necessary for the execution of functions under this paragraph or sub. (14) shall be made from the appropriation in s. 20.485 (1) (h).
45.51(10)(c) (c) A person who at the time of death is a member of a veterans home is a resident of the county in which the veterans home is located for the probate of the person's will, issuance of letters testamentary or other letters authorizing the administration of the decedent's estate, and the administration of the estate.
45.51(11) (11)Disposition of property passing to state. If a member dies without a relative who is entitled to an interest in the property of the member under the rules of intestate succession and without leaving a will the existence of which is made known to the commandant of the home within 60 days of the member's death, the member's property shall be converted to cash, without administration. The commandant of a veterans home shall submit that converted sum to the secretary of administration to be paid into the appropriation under s. 20.485 (1) (h). The amount paid to the secretary of administration is subject to refund within 6 years to the estate of a member if it is subsequently discovered that the member left a will or a relative that is entitled to an interest in the property of the member under the rules of intestate succession or to any creditor of the member who establishes right to the funds or property or any portion of the funds or property. The department of administration, upon being satisfied that a claim out of the funds or property is legal and valid, shall pay the claim out of the funds or property, except that payment of claims for a member's funeral and burial expenses may not exceed a total of $1,500 including any amount allowed by the United States for the member's funeral and burial and the right for burial and interment provided in s. 45.61 (2).
45.51(12) (12)Powers of commandant over personal funds of members. A commandant may receive, disburse, and account for funds of members.
45.51(13) (13)Additional eligibility requirements for skilled nursing facilities. Any person admitted to a skilled nursing facility at a veterans home shall meet the eligibility requirements under ss. 49.45 and 49.46, and, if applicable, s. 49.471 and rules promulgated under those sections during residence at the skilled nursing facility except if any of the following apply:
45.51(13)(a) (a) Persons with sufficient income and resources to meet the expenses of care for one or more months may be admitted to the skilled nursing facility but shall apply income and resources to costs to the extent required under ss. 49.45 and 49.46, and, if applicable, s. 49.471 and rules promulgated under those sections.
45.51(13)(b) (b) Persons who meet all the requirements of this section but whose degree of physical disability does not meet the minimum requirements under ss. 49.45 and 49.46 and rules promulgated under those sections may be admitted to the skilled nursing facility but shall apply income and resources to costs to the extent required by ss. 49.45 and 49.46, and, if applicable, s. 49.471 and rules promulgated under those sections.
45.51(14) (14)Additional eligibility requirement for other care facilities at veterans homes. An otherwise eligible person may be admitted to or remain in residency at a community-based residential facility, as defined in s. 50.01 (1g) or a residential care apartment complex, as defined in s. 50.01 (6d) at a veterans home only if the person has sufficient income and resources, and applies the income and resources to fully reimburse the department for the cost of providing care to the person.
45.51 History History: 2005 a. 22, 25; 2007 a. 20; 2013 a. 20; 2013 a. 165 s. 114; 2015 a. 55.
45.51 Cross-reference Cross-reference: See also s. VA 6.01, Wis. adm. code.
45.55 45.55 Notes and mortgages of minor veterans. Notwithstanding any provision of this chapter or any other law to the contrary, any minor who served in the active armed forces of the United States at any time after August 27, 1940, and the husband or wife of such a minor may execute, in his or her own right, notes or mortgages, as defined in s. 851.15, the payment of which is guaranteed or insured by the U.S. department of veterans affairs or the federal housing administrator under the servicemen's readjustment act of 1944, the national housing act, or any acts supplementing or amending these acts. In connection with these transactions, the minors may sell, release or convey the mortgaged property and litigate or settle controversies arising therefrom, including the execution of releases, deeds, and other necessary papers or instruments. The notes, mortgages, releases, deeds and other necessary papers or instruments when so executed are not subject to avoidance by the minor or the husband or wife of the minor upon either or both of them attaining the age of 18 because of the minority of either or both of them at the time of the execution thereof.
45.55 History History: 1971 c. 41 s. 8; 1971 c. 228 s. 36; Stats. 1971 s. 880.32; 1989 a. 56; 1997 a. 188; 2005 a. 387 s. 457; Stats. 2005 s. 45.55.
45.57 45.57 Veterans homes; transfer of funding. The department may transfer all or part of the unencumbered balance of any of the appropriations under s. 20.485 (1) (g), (gd), (gk), or (i) to the veterans trust fund or to the veterans mortgage loan repayment fund.
45.57 History History: 2013 a. 20; s. 13.92 (1) (bm) 2.
45.58 45.58 Grants to local governments. From the appropriation under s. 20.485 (1) (kj), the department may make up to $300,000 each fiscal biennium in grants to cities, villages, and towns that provide services to veterans homes and other facilities for veterans. A city, village, or town may not expend grant moneys it receives under this section for any purpose other than providing fire and emergency medical services to veterans homes and other facilities for veterans.
45.58 History History: 2015 a. 55; 2017 a. 59 ss. 739r, 2265m, 9449.
subch. VI of ch. 45 SUBCHAPTER VI
FUNERALS, BURIALS, AND CEMETERIES
45.60 45.60 Military funeral honors.
45.60(1)(1)Program.
45.60(1)(a)(a) The department shall administer a program to coordinate the provision of military funeral honors in this state to all of the following:
45.60(1)(a)1. 1. Military personnel on active duty.
45.60(1)(a)2. 2. Former military members who served on active duty and were discharged under conditions other than dishonorable.
45.60(1)(a)3. 3. Members of the selective service.
45.60(1)(a)4. 4. Former members of the selected reserve and national guard who served at least one term of enlistment or period of initial obligated service and were discharged under conditions other than dishonorable.
45.60(1)(a)5. 5. Former members of the selected reserve or national guard who were discharged due to a service-connected disability or for a disability subsequently adjudicated to have been service-connected.
45.60(1)(b) (b) Military funeral honors may be provided by local units of member organizations of the council on veterans programs, by local units of veterans organizations certified by the department to provide military funeral honors, by members of the Wisconsin national guard activated under s. 321.04 (2) (e), or by staff of the department.
45.60(2) (2)Stipends. From the appropriation under s. 20.485 (2) (sm), the department shall reimburse a local unit of a member organization of the council on veterans programs or a local unit of a veterans organization certified by the department to provide military funeral honors for the costs of providing military funeral honors in this state to a person described in sub. (1). The reimbursement may not exceed $50 for each funeral for which military honors are provided.
45.60(3) (3)Tuition voucher.
45.60(3)(a) (a) The department shall create a tuition voucher form to be used by funeral directors under par. (b). The department shall distribute copies of the tuition voucher form, plus an explanation of the form's use, to every operator of a funeral establishment. The department may not charge a fee for the tuition voucher form or for the distribution of the form.
45.60(3)(b) (b) A funeral director may issue a tuition voucher in the amount of $25 to an individual who sounds “Taps" on a bugle, trumpet, or cornet during each funeral for which military honors are held in this state for a person described in sub. (1) and who is a student in grades 6 to 12 or at an institution of higher education, as defined under s. 895.515 (1) (b). The tuition voucher may be used at any time for the payment of tuition and required program activity fees at a University of Wisconsin System institution as provided under s. 36.27 (3r) or a technical college as provided under s. 38.24 (6). The department shall encourage private institutions of higher education to accept the vouchers. The vouchers are not transferable.
45.60 History History: 2005 a. 22, 25; 2007 a. 200; 2013 a. 20; 2015 a. 55.
45.60 Cross-reference Cross-reference: See also ch. VA 17, Wis. adm. code.
45.61 45.61 Wisconsin veterans cemeteries.
45.61(1)(1)Construction and operation of cemeteries. Subject to authorization under ss. 13.48 (10) and 20.924 (1), the department may construct and operate veterans cemeteries in central, northwestern, and southeastern Wisconsin and may employ any personnel that are necessary for the proper management of the cemeteries. The cemetery in central Wisconsin is the Central Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery. The cemetery in southeastern Wisconsin is the Southern Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery. The cemetery in northwestern Wisconsin is the Northern Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery. The department may acquire, by gift, purchase, or condemnation, lands necessary for the purposes of the cemeteries. Title to the properties shall be taken in the name of this state. Every deed of conveyance shall be immediately recorded in the office of the proper register of deeds and thereafter filed with the secretary of state. The department may accept for the state all gifts, grants, and bequests for the purposes of maintenance, restoration, preservation, and rehabilitation of the veterans cemeteries constructed under this subsection. All cemeteries operated by the department are exempt from the requirements of ss. 157.061 to 157.70 and 440.90 to 440.95.
45.61(2) (2)Eligibility. The following persons are eligible for burial at a cemetery constructed and operated under sub. (1):
45.61(2)(a) (a) A person who died while on active duty or who was discharged or released from active duty in the U.S. armed forces under conditions other than dishonorable and who was a resident of this state at the time of his or her entry into active service and his or her dependent child and surviving spouse.
45.61(2)(am) (am) A person who died while on active duty in the U.S. armed forces or in forces incorporated in the U.S. armed forces.
45.61(2)(b) (b) A person who was discharged or released from active duty in the U.S. armed forces under conditions other than dishonorable and who was a resident of this state at the time of his or her death and his or her dependent child and surviving spouse.
45.61(2)(c) (c) The spouse or dependent child of a person who meets one of the following conditions:
45.61(2)(c)1. 1. Is serving on active duty at the time of the spouse's or dependent child's death if the person was a resident of this state at the time of his or her entry or reentry into active service.
45.61(2)(c)2. 2. Was a resident of this state at the time of his or her entry or reentry into active service and was discharged or released from active duty in the U.S. armed forces under honorable conditions.
45.61(2)(c)3. 3. Was discharged or released from active duty in the U.S. armed forces under honorable conditions if the person and spouse or dependent child were residents of this state at the time of the spouse's or dependent child's death.
45.61(2)(d) (d) A person who was a resident of this state at the time of his or her entry or reentry into service in any national guard or a reserve component of the U.S. armed forces or who was a resident of this state for at least 12 consecutive months immediately preceding his or her death, and the person's spouse, surviving spouse, and dependent children, if the person is eligible for burial in a national cemetery under 38 USC 2402.
45.61(2)(e) (e) A person who was discharged or released from active duty in the U.S. armed forces under honorable conditions and who was a resident of this state for at least 12 consecutive months after entering or reentering service on active duty.
45.61(2)(f) (f) A person who is a member of a veterans home under s. 45.50.
45.61(2m) (2m)Unclaimed cremated remains of veterans.
45.61(2m)(a)1.1. A funeral director, cemetery authority, or public officer having custody of unclaimed cremated remains shall, if the cremated remains are not claimed within 90 days after the date of cremation, contact the department, a county veterans service officer, or a local veterans service organization to determine whether the cremated remains are of a person described under sub. (2).
45.61(2m)(a)2. 2. If the department, county veterans service officer, or local veterans service organization determines that the cremated remains are of a person described under sub. (2), the funeral director, cemetery authority, or public officer may transfer the cremated remains to the department for burial under this section.
45.61(2m)(b) (b) A funeral director, cemetery authority, or public officer who transfers cremated remains to the department under par. (a) 2., and, if different from the funeral director, the owner or operator of the funeral establishment, is immune from civil liability for any injury resulting from that act unless the act constitutes gross negligence or involves reckless, wanton, or intentional misconduct.
45.61(3) (3)Fees and costs. The department may charge a fee for burials under this section and may promulgate rules for the assessment of any fee. The cost of preparing the grave and the erection of a marker for a person described under sub. (2) (a), (b), (d), or (e) shall be paid from the appropriation under s. 20.485 (1) (gk).
45.61(4) (4)Application.
45.61(4)(a) (a) Application for burial shall be made to the department. The surviving spouse of the person described under sub. (2) (a), (b), (d), or (e), if that person is interred at the Central Wisconsin Veterans Memorial Cemetery, shall have the privilege of selecting a plot next to that person if available. The department shall hold the plot for the surviving spouse for a period of one year from the date of granting the privilege, but may extend the hold, on request, for additional one-year periods.
45.61(4)(b) (b) In processing applications for burial plots, the department shall maintain a waiting list for each of the cemeteries operated under sub. (1) and shall give priority to state residents on each waiting list.
45.61(5) (5)Expenses.
45.61(5)(a) (a) Expenses incident to the burial under this section of persons described in sub. (2) (a) and (b) to (e) shall be paid from the estate of the decedent, except that if there is no estate or the estate is insufficient, the expense of burial, or necessary part of the burial, shall be paid from the appropriation under s. 20.485 (1) (gk) for members of veterans homes, and the amount expended for those expenses shall not exceed the amount established for funeral and burial expenses under s. 49.785 (1) (b).
45.61(5)(b) (b) Expenses incident to the burial under this section of persons described in sub. (2) (am) shall be paid from the estate of the decedent, except that if there is no estate or the estate is insufficient, the expense of burial, or necessary part of the burial, shall be paid by the relatives who requested the burial.
45.61 History History: 2005 a. 22; 2007 a. 20; 2013 a. 20; 2015 a. 382.
45.61 Cross-reference Cross-reference: See also ch. VA 14, Wis. adm. code.
45.62 45.62 Burial places compiled.
45.62(1)(1)The department may compile a record of veteran's burial places located within the state that may, so far as practicable, indicate all of the following information:
45.62(1)(a) (a) The deceased veteran's name.
45.62(1)(b) (b) The service in which the deceased veteran was engaged.
45.62(1)(c) (c) The appropriate designation of the deceased veteran's armed forces unit.
45.62(1)(d) (d) The deceased veteran's rank and period of service.
45.62(1)(e) (e) The name and location of the cemetery or other place in which the deceased veteran's body is interred.
45.62(1)(f) (f) The location of the deceased veteran's grave in the cemetery or other place of interment.
45.62(1)(g) (g) The character of the headstone or other marker, if any, at the deceased veteran's grave.
45.62(2) (2)The department may prepare blank forms for the transmission to the department of the information required for the record under sub. (1). The department may distribute the forms to county veterans service officers. A county veterans service officer within whose county any cemetery or other burial place is located in which deceased veteran's bodies are interred shall submit the facts required for the record under sub. (1) to the department on the forms provided by the department, if so requested by the department.
45.62 History History: 2005 a. 22.
subch. VII of ch. 45 SUBCHAPTER VII
MEMORIALS
45.70 45.70 Veterans memorials.
45.70(1b)(1b)Establishment and modifications of memorials.
45.70(1b)(a) (a) The board may approve, recommend, and veto any proposed plans, modifications, and changes or policies with respect to established state memorials and any future veterans state memorials, and may recommend the creation and establishment of future veterans state memorials.
45.70(1b)(b) (b) The board may act under par. (a) only if the department estimates that the cost of implementing the proposal for an established or future state memorial will exceed $25,000.
45.70(2) (2)Camp Randall memorial.
45.70(2)(b) (b) No structures, other than memorials approved by the board, and no walks, roads, or subterranean footings may be placed or erected upon Camp Randall Memorial Park, Madison, Wisconsin, as described in par. (c), unless authorized by the legislature; nor shall the park be used for any purpose other than a memorial park.
45.70(2)(c) (c) Camp Randall Memorial Park, Madison, Wisconsin, is established and described as follows: beginning on the west line of Randall Avenue 96.6 feet north of the center line of Dayton Street extended; thence west at right angles to Randall Avenue 370 feet; thence south parallel to Randall Avenue 722 feet; thence west at right angles to Randall Avenue 235 feet; thence south parallel to Randall Avenue 205 feet to the north line of Monroe Street; thence north 50 degrees 14 minutes east along the north line of Monroe Street approximately 780 feet to the west line of Randall Avenue; thence north along the west line of Randall Avenue 429 feet to the place of beginning.
45.70 History History: 2005 a. 22; 2013 a. 20; 2017 a. 59.
45.71 45.71 Catalog of memorials. The department shall prepare a catalog of memorials, describing each memorial and giving its location and condition. The department shall periodically update that catalog.
45.71 History History: 2005 a. 22.
45.72 45.72 County and municipal memorials.
45.72(1)(1)In this section and s. 45.73, “local unit of government" means a city, village, town, or county.
45.72(2) (2)Any local unit of government may by gift, purchase, contract, or condemnation acquire property, real or personal, for the purpose of providing, furnishing, constructing, erecting, repairing, maintaining, or conducting a suitable memorial to the memory of former residents thereof who lost their lives in the military or naval service of the state or of the United States, or to commemorate and honor the deeds of persons, residents thereof, or of the state or United States, who served the nation in any war, or other persons who rendered great state or national service, or to the memory of any president of the United States, or for a combination of any those purposes, which are declared to be public purposes.
45.72(3) (3)The local unit of government shall determine the character of the memorial, and without limitation because of enumeration, the memorial may comprise a public building, hospital, sanatorium, home for the aged or indigent, park, recreation facility, community forest, or other suitable object having a public purpose.
45.72(4) (4)Any local unit of government may appropriate money and may levy a tax to acquire, pay for, construct, erect, furnish, equip, operate, repair, maintain, or reconstruct a suitable memorial for the purpose or purposes provided in this section.
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2015-16 Wisconsin Statutes updated through 2017 Wis. Act 367 and all Supreme Court and Controlled Substances Board Orders effective on or before August 13, 2018. Published and certified under s. 35.18. Changes effective after August 13, 2018 are designated by NOTES. (Published 8-13-18)