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AGO 1951 No. 150 - October 17, 1951
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Smith Troy | 1941-1952 | Attorney General of Washington


Should section 1, chapter 107, Laws of 1951, be held invalid, the statutes relative to the weed districts as existed prior to chapter 107, would come into effect.

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                                                                October 17, 1951

Honorable Maloy Sensney
Prosecuting Attorney
Benton County
Fisk Building
Prosser, Washington                                                                                                              Cite as:  AGO 51-53 No. 150

Dear Sir:

            This is in reply to your letter of October 5, 1951, concerning chapter 107, Laws of 1951.  In this connection, you asked "whether or not the act making the change from levy to assessment by an amendatory section to an existing act if held unconstitutional, would, in fact, make the original act applicable and thus permit a tax levy for the Weed District."

            Our conclusion is in the affirmative.


            Section 1, chapter 107, Laws of 1951 is apparently the only portion of chapter 107 still in effect, since the other three acts of this chapter were given subsequent treatment by the 1951 second special session.  Thus, for the purposes of the opinion, weed districts shall secure their revenues by assessments rather than by taxes.

            Should section 1, chapter 107 be held unconstitutional, we feel that the weed district law as it existed prior to the enactment of section 1, chapter 107 would come into effect.  It appears in those few instances when the problem has been presented to the courts, that where an amending act is held invalid, the original act is unaffected.  11 Am.Jur., section 154.

             [[Orig. Op. Page 2]]

            InTexas Co. v. Cohn, 8 Wn. (2d) 360, 112 P. (2d) 552, the 1939 oil fuel tax law was held unconstitutional by our court.  This act expressly repealed the 1937 oil fuel tax law.  The court held that the 1937 act then remained in full force and effect, since the clause repealing the 1937 act fell along with the rest of the 1939 act.

            It appears to us that the principle of the above case would apply where an amendment was held invalid, and thus our court would most likely be in accord with the authorities cited in 11 Am.Jur., section 154, supra.

Very truly yours,

Attorney General

Assistant Attorney General

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