Washington State

Office of the Attorney General

Attorney General

Bob Ferguson

AGO 1950 No. 191 -
Attorney General Smith Troy


Any funds of the state other than the permanent school fund may be invested in veterans' bonus bonds issued under chapter 180, Laws of 1949.

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                                                                  January 9, 1950

State Finance Committee
Legislative Building
Olympia, Washington                                                                                                              Cite as:  AGO 49-51 No. 191

Attention:  Mr. Ernest Minor, Secretary


            Receipt is acknowledged of your letter of January 4, 1950 in which you inquire as to whether bonds issued under chapter 180, Laws of 1949 (World War II Veterans' Bonus Law) are legal investments for funds of the state other than the permanent school fund.

            It is our conclusion that these bonds are legal investments for all state funds other than the permanent school fund.


            Section 7, chapter 180, Laws of 1949, provides:

            "* * * Bonds issued under the provisions of this act shall be legal investment for any of the funds of the state, including the Permanent School Fund, any higher educational funds, and the Accident Fund of the Department of Labor and Industries."

            In the case ofGruen v. State Tax Commission, 135 Wash. Dec. 1, 35 Wn.2d 1our Supreme Court held that the permanent school fund could not invest in these bonds since they are not general obligations of the state.  Our Supreme Court on several occasions has held that the permanent school fund may be invested only in bonds which are a general obligation of the governmental unit which issues them.  In theGruen case the court said:

             Orig. Op. Page 2

            "However, the holding of this portion of the act invalid does not affect the balance of the act."

            The legislature, when it enacted § 7 of chapter 180, Laws of 1949, clearly expressed its intention to make these bonds eligible for investment by any of the state funds.  This intention was defeated only by reason of the conflict with the constitution insofar as the permanent school fund was concerned.  There is no such constitutional conflict with respect to any other type of fund.  The others are regulated by statute.  The law is well settled in this state that when two acts are in conflict the later will be held to repeal pro tanto the former.  In the case ofRichland Irrigation District v. DeBow, 149 Wash. 242, 270 Pac. 816, our court in speaking of such a situation, said:

            "* * * In such a case, the later act prevails and the prior act to the extent that the two are not harmonious is repealed by implication.  Callvert v. Windsor, 26 Wash. 368, 67 Pac. 91; State ex rel. Arnold v. Mitchell, 55 Wash. 513, 104 Pac. 791."

            Chapter 180, Laws of 1949, has thus superseded any statutes enacted previously that would have limited the eligibility of these bonds for investment by other state funds.  This observation is applicable to those statutes which authorize investment of certain funds in securities in which the permanent school fund may be invested.  This later enactment has specifically authorized the investment of such funds in the bonus bonds.  It is, therefore, our opinion that any funds of the state, other than the permanent school fund, may be legally invested in the bonds issued under authority of chapter 180, Laws of 1949.

Very truly yours,

Attorney General

Assistant Attorney General