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'First Look': Fundraising needed for improvements at Bakersfield National Cemetery

Friday, Jul 05 2013 03:46 PM

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Tom Pasek, a member of the Bakersfield National Cemetery Support Committee, spoke with Scott Cox about fundraising to make improvements at the cemetery.

If the Bakersfield National Cemetery Support Committee has its way, the national cemetery east of the city will have significant improvements but they’ve got to find the money first.

Tom Pasek, a member of Bakersfield National Cemetery Support Committee, visited with Scott Cox to discuss fundraising efforts to bolster monuments, accessibility and other improvements at the cemetery east of town.

“Well this is actually a good news, bad news thing Scott,” Pasek said. “The federal government customarily pays for the acquisition of the land

Pasek explained that the federal government does not budget for “significant cemetery improvements,” and that support committee was raising funds to construct a new avenue of flags, erect monuments and improve parking for major events.

“We’ve gotten special dispensation, from the (Veterans Administration) to have an avenue of flags around the entire loop road, which is nearly a mile,” said Pasek, adding that the committee will hold a fundraiser at the Tejon Ranch on Aug. 10.

The projects are expected to cost more than $1 million. One of the major improvements will be to add parking for special events.

“We think that will be a very significant improvement to the cemetery,” said Pasek, who added that the federal government insists that an extra 10 percent raised to ensure long-term maintenance of the new improvements.

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