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AGO 1954 No. 208 - February 16, 1954
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Don Eastvold | 1953-1956 | Attorney General of Washington

FIRE PROTECTION DISTRICTS ‑- CITIES AND TOWNS ‑- JOINT OWNERSHIP OF FACILITIES.

A fire protection district may contract with a city or town for the joint ownership and occupancy of a fire hall.

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                                                                February 16, 1954

Honorable Hewitt A. Henry
Prosecuting Attorney
Thurston County
310 Court House
Olympia, Washington                                                                                           Cite as:  AGO 53-55 No. 208

Dear Sir:

            We have your letter of February 8, 1954, in which you ask our opinion as to the validity of an arrangement under which a fire protection district and a town proposed to jointly own and occupy a building to house fire fighting equipment which the district leases from the town.

            In our opinion RCW 52.08.030 provides specific authorization for such joint ownership.

                                                                     ANALYSIS

            RCW 52.08.030 (6) provides in part as follows:

            "Two or more fire protection districts may contract with each other andsuch a district may contract with a city * * * for the joint leasing, ownership, maintenance, and operation of all necessary and proper apparatus, facilities, machinery, and equipment for the elimination of fire hazards and for the protection  [[Orig. Op. Page 2]] of life and property within the contracting districts, andof real property, improvements and fixtures thereon suitable and convenient for the housing, repairing, and caring for such apparatus, facilities, machinery, and equipment, and may contribute their agreed proportion of the cost and expense thereof."  (Emphasis supplied)

            In our opinion, the phrase "such a district" refers to any single fire protection district, and was not intended to be limited to those districts which had contracted with "each other."  Under such interpretation, it follows that the statute expressly grants authority for joint ownership of a fire hall by a fire protection district and a city.

Very truly yours,

DON EASTVOLD
Attorney General

ANDY ENGEBRETSEN
Assistant Attorney General

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