Chapter 43.130 RCW

ECONOMIC IMPACT ACTCLOSING OF STATE FACILITIES

Sections

43.130.010Purpose.
43.130.020Definitions.
43.130.030Excluded employment and employees.
43.130.040Benefits.
43.130.050EligibilityConditions.
43.130.060Reimbursement of public employees' retirement system.
43.130.910EmergencyOperative datesTermination of benefits.


Purpose.

When either for fiscal reasons, obsolescence or other extraordinary reasons, it becomes necessary to close a state facility, as defined by RCW 43.130.020(2), the state has a responsibility to provide certain benefits to affected employees.
It is the purpose of this chapter to establish an economic impact act for the state of Washington to meet the emergency situation now in existence for state employees affected by the closure of state facilities, as defined in RCW 43.130.020.



Definitions.

For purposes of this chapter:
(1) "Employees" includes those persons performing services for the state on a salaried or hourly basis including, but not limited to, persons in "classified service" as defined in *RCW 41.06.020(3) and those persons defined as exempt from the state civil service laws pursuant to RCW 41.06.070.
(2) The term "closure of a state facility" means the termination of services being provided by a facility operated by the department of social and health services or in conjunction with the department of natural resources, when such facility is terminated for fiscal reasons, obsolescence, or other extraordinary reasons.
(3) "Classified employees" means those employees performing classified service as defined in *RCW 41.06.020(3).

NOTES:

*Reviser's note: RCW 41.06.020 was alphabetized pursuant to RCW 1.08.015(2)(k), changing subsection (3) to subsection (5).



Excluded employment and employees.

Excluded employment and excluded employees under this chapter include, but are not limited to, the following:
(1) State employment related to a single project under a program separately financed by a grant of nonstate funds, federal funds or state funds, or by a combination of such funding, which is designed to provide training or employment opportunities, expertise or additional manpower related to the project or which, because of the nature of the project funding requirements, is not intended as a permanent program.
(2) Activities at least seventy-five percent federally funded by a categorical grant for a specific purpose and any other activities terminated because of actions taken by the federal government or other funding sources other than the state of Washington in eliminating or substantially limiting funding sources, except to the extent that the federal government or such other funding sources may permit the use of nonstate funds to pay for any employee benefits authorized pursuant to this chapter.
(3) The following categories of employees are excluded from benefits under this chapter:
(a) employees refusing transfer to vacant positions in the same or a like job classification and at not more than one full range lower than the same salary range;
(b) classified employees having other than permanent status in the classified service;
(c) employees having less than three years' consecutive state service as an employee, except that such employees shall nonetheless be eligible for the benefits provided in subsections (1), (2), (4) and (5) of RCW 43.130.040.
(d) nothing in this chapter shall affect any other rights currently held by classified employees regarding reduction in force procedures and subsequent reemployment.



Benefits.

In order to carry out the purposes of this chapter, the state shall take every reasonable step at its disposal to provide alternative employment and to minimize the economic loss of state employees affected by the closure of state facilities. Affected state employees shall be paid benefits as specified in this section.
(1) Relocation expenses covering the movement of household goods, incurred by the necessity of an employee moving his or her domicile to be within reasonable commuting distance of a new job site, shall be paid by the state to employees transferring to other state employment by reason of the closure of a facility.
(2) Relocation leave shall be allowed up to five working days' leave with pay for the purpose of locating new residence in the area of employment.
(3) The state shall reimburse the transferring employee to the extent of any unavoidable financial loss suffered by an employee who sells his or her home at a price less than the true and fair market value as determined by the county assessor not exceeding three thousand dollars: PROVIDED, That this right of reimbursement must be exercised, and sale of the property must be accomplished, within a period of two years from the date other state employment is accepted.
(4) For employees in facilities which have been terminated who do not choose to participate in the transfer program set forth in the preceding subsections, the following terminal pay plan shall be available:
(a) For qualifying employees, for each one year of continuous state service, one week (five working days) of regular compensation shall be provided.
(b) Regular compensation as used in subsection (a) hereof shall include salary compensation at the rate being paid to the employees at the time operation of the facility is terminated.
(c) Terminal pay as set forth in subsections (a) and (b) hereof shall be paid to the employee at the termination of the employees last month of employment or within thirty days after *the effective date of this 1973 act, whichever is later: PROVIDED, That from the total amount of terminal pay, the average sum of unemployment compensation that the qualifying employee is eligible to receive multiplied by the total number of weeks of terminal pay minus one week shall be deducted.
(d) Those employees electing the early retirement benefits as stated in subsection (5) of this section shall not be eligible for the terminal pay provisions as set forth in this subsection.
(e) Those employees who are reemployed by the state during the period they are receiving terminal pay pursuant to subsections (a), (b) and (c) of this section shall reimburse the state for that portion of the terminal pay covered by the period of new employment.
(5) As an option to transferring to other state employment an employee may elect early retirement under the following conditions:
(a) Notwithstanding the age requirements of RCW 41.40.180, any affected employee under this chapter who has attained the age of fifty-five years, with at least five years creditable service, shall be immediately eligible to retire, with no actuarial reduction in the amount of his or her pension benefit.
(b) Notwithstanding the age requirements of RCW 41.40.180, any affected employee under this chapter who has attained the age of forty-five years, with at least five years creditable service, shall be immediately eligible to retire with an actuarial reduction in the amount of his or her pension benefit of three percent for each complete year that such employee is under fifty-five years of age.
(c) Employees who elect to retire pursuant to RCW 41.40.180 shall be eligible to retire while on authorized leave of absence not in excess of one hundred and twenty days.
(d) Employees who elect to retire under the provisions of this section shall not be eligible for any retirement benefit in a year following a year in which their employment income was in excess of six thousand dollars. This six thousand dollars base shall be adjusted annually beginning in 1974 by such cost of living adjustments as are applied by the public employees' retirement system to membership retirement benefits. The public employees retirement system board shall adopt necessary rules and regulations to implement the provisions of this subsection.

NOTES:

*Reviser's note: The effective date of 1973 2nd ex.s. c 37 was September 26, 1973.
Public employees' retirement system: Chapter 41.40 RCW.
Termination date of benefits under subsection (3) of this section: RCW 43.130.910.



EligibilityConditions.

Notwithstanding any other provision of this chapter employees affected by the closure of a state facility as defined in RCW 43.130.020(2) who were employed as of May 1, 1973 at such facility, and who are still in employment of the state or on an official leave of absence as of September 26, 1973, who would otherwise qualify for the enumerated benefits of this chapter are hereby declared eligible for such benefits under the following conditions:
(1) Such employee must be actively employed by the state of Washington or on an official leave of absence on September 26, 1973, and unless the early retirement or terminal pay provisions of this chapter are elected, continue to be employed or to be available for employment in a same or like job classification at not less than one full range lower than the same salary range for a period of at least thirty days thereafter;
(2) Such employee must give written notice of his or her election to avail himself or herself of such benefits within thirty days after the *passage of this 1973 act or upon closure of the institution, whichever is later.

NOTES:

*Reviser's note: The effective date of 1973 2nd ex.s. c 37 was September 26, 1973, due to the emergency clause contained in section 9, codified as RCW 43.130.910.
1973 2nd ex.s. c 37 (Engrossed Substitute Senate Bill No. 2603) passed the Senate September 14, 1973, passed the House September 13, 1973, and was approved by the governor September 26, 1973.
Employees to whom chapter is operative: RCW 43.130.910.



Reimbursement of public employees' retirement system.

In order to reimburse the public employees' retirement system for any increased costs occasioned by the provisions of this chapter which affect the retirement system, the director of retirement systems shall, within thirty days of the date upon which any affected employee elects to take advantage of the retirement provisions of this chapter, determine the increased present and future cost to the retirement system of such employee's election. Upon the determination of the amount necessary to offset the increased cost, the director of retirement systems shall bill the department of enterprise services for the amount of the increased cost: PROVIDED, That such billing shall not exceed eight hundred sixty-one thousand dollars. Such billing shall be paid by the department as, and the same shall be, a proper charge against any moneys available or appropriated to the department for this purpose.

NOTES:

Effective datePurpose2011 1st sp.s. c 43: See notes following RCW 43.19.003.



EmergencyOperative datesTermination of benefits.

This 1973 act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health and safety, the support of state government and its existing public institutions and shall take effect immediately: PROVIDED HOWEVER, That each of the provisions of this 1973 act shall be operative and in effect only for employees of those state facilities closed after May 1, 1973 and prior to September 14, 1974: PROVIDED FURTHER, That benefits under section 4(3) of this 1973 act shall be available until September 14, 1975.