Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson

AGO 1992 NO. 3 > Feb 28 1992

1.  The Enabling Act and article 16, section 1 of the Washington Constitution constitute a declaration of trust with regard to the property granted to the State by the United States in the Enabling Act.  The constitutional trust established in article 16, section 1 does not apply to land donated to the Washington Territory that was not confirmed or reconveyed to the State in the Enabling Act. 2.   The State's ability to use or transfer property acquired from the United States by grant is limited by any restrictions contained in the federal grant.  However, since title to the property rests with the State, it may use or transfer the property as it chooses, so long as the State's use or transfer conforms to the restrictions in the grant.  3.  Under RCW 79.01.006(2), federal restrictions on property, that limit its use to public recreational and other specific purposes, are binding conditions that conflict with other provisions of RCW 79.01.006.  Therefore, property subject to such restrictions is not included in the corpus of the educational, penal, and reformatory institution account pursuant to chapter 79.01 RCW.