Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson

Where an incumbent county treasurer is re‑elected [[reelected]] and dies before the commencement of the new term an appointee filling the vacancy holds office from the date of appointment until the next general election and until a successor is elected and qualified.

AGO 1980 NO. 1 > Jan 3 1980

(1) Except where prohibited by RCW 42.17.260(5), inspection and copying of an assessor's property tax assessment roll and supporting materials must be allowed unless the specific exemptions covering taxpayer information, as set forth in RCW 42.17.310(1)(c) and RCW 84.40.020, are applicable in a given case.  (2) Real property assessment rolls prepared pursuant to RCW 84.40.020 and 84.40.160 are lists of taxable property and not individuals and, therefore, their disclosure is not prohibited by RCW 42.17.260(5) even for a commercial purpose; whether this is also true of personal property assessment rolls will depend upon their actual form.

AGO 1974 NO. 1 > Jan 16 1974

The provisions of § 4 (1), chapter 202, Laws of 1973, 1st Ex. Sess., do not prohibit persons obtaining specific investigative information regarding organized crime activities by reason of their public employment with the state of Washington or its political subdivisions from divulging that information to nonlaw enforcement agencies such as mayors, city councils, licensing departments, legislative committees or other regulatory bodies when called upon to do so in the performance of their official functions and duties.

AGO 1972 NO. 1 > Jan 10 1972

(1) A prosecuting attorney of a fourth through ninth class county, in his separate capacity as county coroner under RCW 36.16.030, may appoint one or more deputy coroners with the consent of his board of county commissioners.(2) The compensation of any persons so appointed as deputy coroners is to be fixed by the board of county commissioners.(3) There is no legal requirement that a person appointed to serve as a deputy county coroner in a fourth class county be admitted to the practice of law in this state.

AGLO 1980 NO. 2 > Jan 11 1980

The failure of a newly elected county clerk to execute and furnish an official bond pursuant to RCW 36.16.050 does not cause a vacancy in the office to exist pursuant to RCW 42.12.010; instead, such omission merely bars the newly elected clerk from qualifying and, thus, continues the term of his or her predecessor who, however, may, by resigning or refusing to serve, cause a vacancy to come into existence.

AGO 1977 NO. 2 > Jan 10 1977

Under present state constitutional provisions, it is now permissible for county commissioners to receive a legislatively granted mid-term salary increase resulting from an upward reclassification of their county and the commissioners may, constitutionally, adopt appropriate budgetary amendments to fund such salary increases.

AGO 1961 NO. 3 > Jan 20 1961

The board of county commissioners is not granted authority by RCW 36.32.120 or 67.20.010 to construct and operate a sports stadium or arena or to purchase on behalf of the county a major league professional sports franchise including but not limited to baseball and football.

AGO 1959 NO. 3 > Jan 21 1959

A county health officer may be paid a fee for examination of persons suspected of being mentally ill but not be paid per diem for his attendance and testimony on the mental illness complaint.

AGO 1975 NO. 3 > Feb 10 1975

(1) Where the salary of a superior court aide is fixed by statute, or by the county commissioners or other legislative authority pursuant thereto, a judge of the court is without power to set a higher salary by a directive or order in a nonjudicial proceeding; the court may, however, entertain an action for a writ of mandamus to require the salary fixing authority to raise the salaries of its personnel, but it will only be justified in granting the writ if, applying recognized judicial standards, it finds that the legislative authority involved has acted arbitrarily or capriciously.  (2) Under RCW 2.28.139 it is the obligation of each county (acting through its county commissioners) to furnish the courtroom and related necessary facilities for the conduct of the superior court; if the county fails to do so, the court may order the sheriff to provide the requisite facilities at county expense or, if this administrative remedy fails, the court may compel the commissioners to comply with the requirement of the statute by issuance of a writ of mandamus in a judicial proceeding ‑ subject to a right of appeal and all other procedural requisites of a regular court case.

AGO 1965 NO. 4 > Jan 18 1965

If an assessor has good reason to believe that there may be an error in the tax rolls which would result in certain property being assessed at other than its true and fair value, he has the authority and a duty to determine whether an error does exist, and if so, to take whatever corrective measures that are necessary.