The State Parks and Recreation Commission may accept in trust gifts of money to be devoted to a specific purpose.
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January 4, 1951
Representative Elmer E. Johnston Simons Building Spokane, Washington Cite as: AGO 49-51 No. 413
Receipt is acknowledged of your request for an opinion as to whether the State Parks and Recreation Commission can receive gifts of money for a designated purpose and agree to devote it solely to the purpose for which it is given.
It is our conclusion that the State Parks and Recreation Commission has the authority to accept gifts of money for a specified purpose and to agree to apply the money solely to that purpose.
The State Parks and Recreation Commission is given specific authority by statute to receive in trust any money donated to it and to carry out the terms of the donation. Section 3, chapter 149, Laws of 1921, as last amended by section 2, chapter 157, Laws of 1923 (Rem. Rev. Stat. 10943) reads:
"The state parks committee shall also have the power to receive in trust any money donated or bequeathed to it, and to carry out the terms, if any, of such donation or bequest, or, in the absence of such terms, to expend the same as it may deem advisable for park or parkway purposes. Money so received shall be deposited in the state treasury to the credit of the state parks and parkway fund."
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The State Parks and Recreation Commission has succeeded to all the powers and duties of the State Parks Committee. Section 1, chapter 271, Laws of 1947 (§ 10768 Rem. 1947 Supp.). The Parks and Recreation Commission has full power to enter into a binding agreement to devote funds received by gift to the purpose for which they are granted. Funds so received, although deposited in the Parks and Parkway Fund in the State Treasury will be held as trust funds. In order to consummate such an arrangement the donor should write a letter or deed of gift setting forth the conditions under which the donation is made and the State Parks and Recreation Commission should adopt a resolution accepting the terms of the gift.