Idaho Residents Protest Plan to Open Funeral Home Across from Their Senior Center

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Several older residents of this town are protesting plans to open a funeral home across the street from a senior center, saying it would be a little too close for comfort.

About 100 people have signed a petition calling on the City Council to deny James Asper and Mary Hansen, partners in Aspen Funeral Home LLC, a special use permit giving them the right to lease the building across the street from the Lake City Senior Center as a funeral home, senior center manager Vickie Harrison said. They plan to present the petition at a Feb. 5 hearing on the matter, she said.

"I don't like it at all. It kind of gives you an uncomfortable feeling," said 65-year-old Marg Dunkle, who signed the petition.

The city's planning commission approved a special use permit in December for the business, but a neighbor appealed the decision, citing concerns over traffic and parking.

Hansen said the building was chosen because it suited the business' needs, not because of its proximity to the senior center.

"We find it a little disconcerting that they would think that location is intentional," Hansen said.

Some, like 81-year-old Doy Seng, had a practical view of the proposed funeral home.

"We're old here. We're all ready to go," she said. "I think it will be handy."