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AGO 1953 No. 129 - September 04, 1953
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Don Eastvold | 1953-1956 | Attorney General of Washington


A city participating in the Statewide City Employees Retirement System may withdraw from such system under the provisions of chapter 228, Laws of 1953, section 2, subsection 5, notwithstanding any provisions contained in subsection 1 of the same section.

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                                                               September 4, 1953

Honorable Cliff Yelle
State Auditor
Legislative Building
Olympia, Washington                                                                                                              Cite as:  AGO 53-55 No. 129

Attention:  !ttMr. A. E. Hankins

            Chief Examiner

Dear Sir:

            Receipt of your letter of August 6, 1953, is hereby acknowledged.  You request our opinion on the construction of sections 2 (1) and 2 (5), chapter 228, Laws of 1953, the specific question being:

            May a city withdraw from the statewide city employees retirement system under the authority of section 2 (5), chapter 228, Laws of 1953, in the light of section 2 (1) of the same act?

            It is our conclusion that the language of section 2 (1) relates only to the method of computation of the amount of the city's contributions and does not obligate the city to remain in the system.


            Section 2 (5), chapter 228, Laws of 1953, provides a method of withdrawing from the system.  Section 2 (1) of the act provides for an alternative method of ascertaining the amount of certain of the cities' required contributions.  The language  [[Orig. Op. Page 2]] of that alternate method refers to "* * * an amount estimated actuarially, necessary to amortize over a period of not to exceed thirty years, all liabilities on account of the participation * * *" in the system.  This provision of section 2 (1) relates only to the method of computation of the amount of the city's contribution and does not obligate the city to remain in the present system.  The city apparently retains its right of withdrawal under section 2 (5), upon proper vote by the electors, notwithstanding any change it may make in the method of computation of its contributions.

            Further evidence of the legislature's intention to permit a city to withdraw from the system is contained in section 2 (2) of the act which reads in part as follows:

            "* * * the board shall have the right to require any city that has withdrawn from the system, to annually, at the beginning of each calendar year, deposit and pay in cash an amount estimated by the board to be sufficient to meet the obligation of such city for the ensuing year to those of its members receiving a retirement allowance.  * * *"

Very truly yours,

Attorney General

Assistant Attorney General

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