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AGO 1952 No. 329 - June 23, 1952
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Smith Troy | 1941-1952 | Attorney General of Washington

MILITARY LEAVE OF ABSENCE ‑- EMPLOYEE OF WASHINGTON STATE FERRY SYSTEM

Employees of the Washington State Ferry System are entitled to an annual military leave of absence for a period of not exceeding fifteen days pursuant to the provisions of RCW 38.40.060 (chapter 113, Laws of 1939).

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                                                                   June 23, 1952

Mr. J. W. Hoover
Secretary
Washington Toll Bridge Authority
Transportation Building
Olympia, Washington                                                                                                              Cite as:  AGO 51-53 No. 329

Dear Sir:

            You have requested our opinion as to whether employees of the Washington State Ferry System fall within the provisions of RCW 38.40.060 (§ 1, chapter 139, Laws of 1939) which in part states:

            "Every officer and employee of the state or of any county, city, or other political subdivision thereof who is a member of the Washington national guard or of the army, navy, or marine corps reserve of the United States, or of any organized reserve or armed forces of the United States shall be entitled to and shall be granted military leave of absence from such employment for a period not exceeding fifteen days during each calendar year.  * * *"

            Our conclusion is that employees of the Washington State Ferry System are employees of the state and, consequently, are entitled to an annual military leave of absence pursuant to the above statute.

             [[Orig. Op. Page 2]]

                                                                     ANALYSIS

            The question turns upon whether an employee of the Washington State Ferry System is an employee of the state since RCW 38.40.060 grants such a leave to "Every officer and employee of the state * * *."

            RCW 47.60.010 (chapter 179, Laws of 1949) authorizes the Washington Toll Bridge Authority, after having acquired a system of ferries on Puget Sound to "* * * operate, improve and extend, a system of ferries on and crossing Puget Sound * * *."

            The Washington Toll Bridge Authority was specifically created by statute, RCW 47.56.020 (§ 2 chapter 173, Laws of 1937) as a department of the executive branch of the state government.  Since the Authority which owns and operates the ferries is an integral branch of the state government, an employee of the Authority necessarily is an employee of the state and consequently is entitled to receive an annual military leave of absence as provided by RCW 38.40.060.

Very truly yours,

SMITH TROY
Attorney General

DON CARY SMITH
Assistant Attorney General

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