Chapter 35.10 RCW

CONSOLIDATION AND ANNEXATION OF CITIES AND TOWNS

Sections

35.10.001Actions subject to review by boundary review board.
35.10.203Purpose.
35.10.207"City" defined.
35.10.217Methods for annexation.
35.10.240AnnexationCanvass of votes.
35.10.265AnnexationWhen effectiveOrdinance.
35.10.300Disposition of property and assets following consolidation or annexation.
35.10.310Assets and liabilities of component citiesTaxation to pay claims.
35.10.315Adoption of final budget and levy of property taxes.
35.10.317Receipt of state funds.
35.10.320Continuation of ordinances.
35.10.331Unassumed indebtedness.
35.10.350Cancellation, acquisition of franchise or permit for operation of public service business in territory annexed.
35.10.360AnnexationTransfer of fire department employees.
35.10.365AnnexationTransfer of fire department employeesRights and benefits.
35.10.370AnnexationTransfer of fire department employeesNoticeTime limitation.
35.10.400Consolidation.
35.10.410ConsolidationSubmission of ballot proposalInitiation by resolution of legislative body.
35.10.420ConsolidationSubmission of ballot proposalInitiation by petition.
35.10.430ConsolidationForm of government.
35.10.440ConsolidationAssumption of general obligation indebtedness.
35.10.450ConsolidationPublic meetings on proposalRole of boundary review board.
35.10.460ConsolidationBallot questions.
35.10.470ConsolidationCanvass of votes.
35.10.480ConsolidationElections of officialsEffective date of consolidation.
35.10.490ConsolidationName of city.
35.10.500ConsolidationCosts of election and public meetings.
35.10.510ConsolidationTransfer of fire department employees.
35.10.520ConsolidationTransfer of fire department employeesRights and benefits.
35.10.530ConsolidationTransfer of fire department employeesNoticeTime limitation.
35.10.540ConsolidationCreation of community municipal corporation.
35.10.550ConsolidationWards.

NOTES:

Census to be conducted in decennial periods: State Constitution Art. 2 § 3.
Consolidation and annexation exempt from state environmental policy act: RCW 43.21C.225.
Population determinations: Chapter 43.62 RCW.
Procedure to attack consolidation or annexation affecting a city of the second class: RCW 35.23.545.


Actions subject to review by boundary review board.

Actions taken under chapter 35.10 RCW may be subject to potential review by a boundary review board under chapter 36.93 RCW.



Purpose.

The purpose of this chapter is to establish clear and uniform provisions of law governing the consolidation of all types and classes of cities.



"City" defined.

As used in this chapter, the term "city" means any city or town.



Methods for annexation.

The following methods are available for the annexation of all or a part of a city or town to another city or town:
(1) A petition for an election to vote upon the annexation, which proposed annexation is approved by the legislative body of the city or town from which the territory will be taken, may be submitted to the legislative body of the city or town to which annexation is proposed. An annexation under this subsection shall otherwise conform with the requirements for and procedures of a petition and election method of annexing unincorporated territory under chapter 35.13 RCW, except for the requirement for the approval of the annexation by the city or town from which the territory would be taken.
(2) The legislative body of a city or town may on its own initiative by resolution indicate its desire to be annexed to a city or town either in whole or in part, or the legislative body of a city or town proposing to annex all or part of another city or town may initiate the annexation by adopting a resolution indicating that desire. In case such resolution is passed, such resolution shall be transmitted to the other affected city or town. The annexation is effective if the other city or town adopts a resolution concurring in the annexation, unless the owners of property in the area proposed to be annexed, equal in value to sixty percent or more of the assessed valuation of the property in the area, protest the proposed annexation in writing to the legislative body of the city or town proposing to annex the area, within thirty days of the adoption of the second resolution accepting the annexation. Notices of the public hearing at which the second resolution is adopted shall be mailed to the owners of the property within the area proposed to be annexed in the same manner that notices of a hearing on a proposed local improvement district are required to be mailed by a city or town as provided in chapter 35.43 RCW. An annexation under this subsection shall be potentially subject to review by a boundary review board or other annexation review board after the adoption of the initial resolution, and the second resolution may not be adopted until the proposed annexation has been approved by the board.
(3) The owners of property located in a city or town may petition for annexation to another city or town. An annexation under this subsection shall conform with the requirements for and procedures of a direct petition method of annexing unincorporated territory, except that the legislative body of the city or town from which the territory would be taken must approve the annexation before it may proceed.
(4) All annexations under this section are subject to potential review by the local boundary review board or annexation review board.



AnnexationCanvass of votes.

In all cases of annexation, the county canvassing board or boards shall canvass the votes cast thereat.
In an election on the question of the annexation of all or a part of a city to another city, the votes cast in the city or portion thereof to be annexed shall be canvassed, and if a majority of the votes cast be in favor of annexation, the results shall be included in a statement indicating the total number of votes cast.
A proposition for the assumption of indebtedness outside the constitutional and/or statutory limits by the other city or cities in which the indebtedness did not originate shall be deemed approved if a majority of at least three-fifths of the voters of each city in which the indebtedness did not originate votes in favor thereof, and the number of persons voting on such proposition constitutes not less than forty percent of the total number of votes cast in such cities in which indebtedness did not originate at the last preceding general election: PROVIDED, HOWEVER, That if general obligation bond indebtedness was incurred by action by the city legislative body, a proposition for the assumption of such indebtedness by the other city or cities in which such indebtedness did not originate shall be deemed approved if a majority of the voters of each city in which such indebtedness did not originate votes in favor thereof.
A duly certified copy of such statement of an annexation election shall be filed with the legislative body of each of the cities affected and recorded upon its minutes, and it shall be the duty of the clerk, or other officer performing the duties of clerk, of each of such legislative bodies, to transmit to the secretary of state and the office of financial management a duly certified copy of the record of such statement.

NOTES:

SeverabilityEffective datesConstruction1973 1st ex.s. c 195: See notes following RCW 84.52.043.
Validating1929 c 64: "That the attempted consolidation of two or more contiguous municipal corporations pursuant to the provisions of either chapter 167 of the Laws of 1927 or chapter 293 of the Laws of 1927 be, and any such consolidation of any such cities or towns, is hereby in all respects validated." [ 1929 c 64 § 16.]
Canvassing returns, generally: Chapter 29A.60 RCW.
Conduct of electionsCanvass: RCW 29A.60.010.



AnnexationWhen effectiveOrdinance.

Immediately after the filing of the statement of an annexation election, the legislative body of the annexing city may, if it deems it wise or expedient, adopt an ordinance providing for the annexation. Upon the date fixed in the ordinance of annexation, the area annexed shall become a part of the annexing city. The clerk of the annexing city shall transmit a certified copy of this ordinance to the secretary of state and the office of financial management.



Disposition of property and assets following consolidation or annexation.

Upon the consolidation of two or more cities, or the annexation of any city to another city, as provided in this chapter, the title to all property and assets owned by, or held in trust for, such former city shall vest in such consolidated city, or annexing city, as the case may be: PROVIDED, That if any such former city, shall be indebted, the proceeds of the sale of any such property and assets not required for the use of such consolidated city, or annexing city, shall be applied to the payment of such indebtedness, if any exist at the time of such sale.



Assets and liabilities of component citiesTaxation to pay claims.

Such consolidation, or annexation, shall in no wise affect or impair the validity of claim or chose in action existing in favor of or against, any such former city so consolidated or annexed, or any proceeding pending in relation thereto, but such consolidated or annexing city shall collect such claims in favor of such former cities, and shall apply the proceeds to the payment of any just claims against them respectively, and shall when necessary levy and collect taxes against the taxable property within any such former city sufficient to pay all just claims against it.



Adoption of final budget and levy of property taxes.

Upon the consolidation of two or more cities, or the annexation of any city after March 1st and prior to the date of adopting the final budget and levying the property tax dollar rate in that year for the next calendar year, the legislative body of the consolidated city or the annexing city is authorized to adopt the final budget and to levy the property tax dollar rate for the consolidated cities and any city annexed.

NOTES:

SeverabilityEffective datesConstruction1973 1st ex.s. c 195: See notes following RCW 84.52.043.



Receipt of state funds.

Upon the consolidation of two or more cities, or the annexation of any city, the consolidated or annexing city shall receive all state funds to which the component cities would have been entitled to receive during the year when such consolidation or annexation became effective.



Continuation of ordinances.

All ordinances in force within any such former city or cities, at the time of consolidation or annexation, not in conflict with the laws governing the consolidated city, or with the ordinances of the former city having the largest population, as shown by the last determination of the office of financial management shall remain in full force and effect until superseded or repealed by the legislative body of the consolidated or annexing city, and shall be enforced by such city, but all ordinances of such former cities, in conflict with such ordinances shall be deemed repealed by, and from and after, such consolidation or annexation, but nothing in this section shall be construed to discharge any person from any liability, civil or criminal, for any violation of any ordinance of such former city or cities incurred prior to such consolidation or annexation.



Unassumed indebtedness.

Unless indebtedness approved by the voters, contracted, or incurred prior to the date of consolidation or annexation as provided herein has been assumed by the voters in the other city or cities in which such indebtedness did not originate, such indebtedness continues to be the obligation of the city in which it originated, and the legislative body of the consolidated or annexing city shall continue to levy the necessary taxes within the former city that incurred this indebtedness to amortize such indebtedness.



Cancellation, acquisition of franchise or permit for operation of public service business in territory annexed.

See RCW 35.13.280.



AnnexationTransfer of fire department employees.

(1) If any portion of a fire protection district is proposed for annexation to or incorporation into a city, code city, or town, both the fire protection district and the city, code city, or town shall jointly inform the employees of the fire protection district about hires, separations, terminations, and any other changes in employment that are a direct consequence of annexation or incorporations at the earliest reasonable opportunity.
(2) Upon the annexation of two or more cities or code cities, any employee of the fire department of the former city or cities who (a) was at the time of annexation employed exclusively or principally in performing the powers, duties, and functions which are to be performed by the fire department of the annexed city or code city, as the case may be, (b) will, as a direct consequence of annexation, be separated from the employ of the former city, code city or town, and (c) can perform the duties and meet the minimum requirements of the position to be filled, then such employee may transfer employment to the fire department of the annexing city, as provided in this section and RCW 35.10.365 and 35.10.370.
(3) For purposes of this section and RCW 35.10.365 and 35.10.370, employee means an individual whose employment has been terminated because of annexation by a city, code city or town.



AnnexationTransfer of fire department employeesRights and benefits.

(1) An eligible employee may transfer into the civil service system of the annexing city, code city, or town by filing a written request with the city, code city, or town civil service commission. Upon receipt of the request by the civil service commission, the transfer of employment must be made. The needed employees shall be taken in order of seniority and the remaining employees who transfer as provided in this section and RCW 35.10.360 and 35.10.370 shall head the list for employment in the civil service system in order of their seniority, to the end that they shall be the first to be reemployed in the city, code city, or town fire department when appropriate positions become available: PROVIDED, That employees who are not immediately hired by the city, code city, or town shall be placed on a reemployment list for a period not to exceed thirty-six months unless a longer period is authorized by an agreement reached between the collective bargaining representatives of the employees of the annexing and annexed fire agencies and the annexing and annexed fire agencies.
(2)(a) Upon transfer, an employee is entitled to the employee rights, benefits, and privileges to which he or she would have been entitled as an employee of the fire protection district, including rights to:
(i) Compensation at least equal to the level of compensation at the time of transfer, unless the employee's rank and duties have been reduced as a result of the transfer. If the transferring employee is placed in a position with reduced rank and duties, the employee's compensation may be adjusted, but the adjustment may not result in a decrease of greater than fifty percent of the difference between the employee's compensation before the transfer and the compensation level for the position that the employee is transferred to;
(ii) Retirement, vacation, sick leave, and any other accrued benefit;
(iii) Promotion and service time accrual; and
(iv) The length or terms of probationary periods, including no requirement for an additional probationary period if one had been completed before the transfer date.
(b) (a) of this subsection does not apply if upon transfer an agreement for different terms of transfer is reached between the collective bargaining representatives of the transferring employees and the participating fire protection jurisdictions.
(3) If upon transfer, the transferring employee receives the rights, benefits, and privileges established under subsection (2)(a)(i) through (iv) of this section, those rights, benefits, and privileges are subject to collective bargaining at the end of the current bargaining period for the jurisdiction to which the employee has transferred.
(4) Such bargaining must take into account the years of service the transferring employee accumulated before the transfer and must be treated as if those years of service occurred in the jurisdiction to which the employee has transferred.

NOTES:

Effective date1994 c 73: "This act is necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions, and shall take effect immediately [March 23, 1994]." [ 1994 c 73 § 6.]



AnnexationTransfer of fire department employeesNoticeTime limitation.

If, as a result of annexation of two or more cities, or code cities any employee is laid off who is eligible to transfer to the city, code city or town fire department under this section and RCW 35.10.360 and 35.10.365 the fire department shall notify the employee of the right to transfer and the employee shall have ninety days to transfer employment to the annexing city or code city fire department.



Consolidation.

Two or more contiguous cities located in the same or different counties may consolidate into one city by proceedings in conformity with the provisions of this chapter. When cities are separated by water and/or tide or shore lands they shall be deemed contiguous for all the purposes of this chapter and, upon a consolidation of such cities under the provisions of this chapter, any such intervening water and/or tide or shore lands shall become a part of the consolidated city. The consolidated city shall become a noncharter code city operating under Title 35A RCW.



ConsolidationSubmission of ballot proposalInitiation by resolution of legislative body.

The submission of a ballot proposal to the voters of two or more contiguous cities for the consolidation of these contiguous cities may be caused by the adoption of a joint resolution, by a majority vote of each city legislative body, seeking consolidation of such contiguous cities. The joint resolution shall provide for submission of the question to the voters at the next general municipal election, if one is to be held more than ninety days but not more than one hundred eighty days after the passage of the joint resolution, or shall call for a special election to be held for that purpose at the next special election date, as specified in RCW 29A.04.330, that occurs ninety or more days after the passage of the joint resolution. The legislative bodies of the cities also shall notify the county legislative authority of each county in which the cities are located of the proposed consolidation.



ConsolidationSubmission of ballot proposalInitiation by petition.

The submission of a ballot proposal to the voters of two or more contiguous cities for the consolidation of these contiguous cities may also be caused by the filing of a petition with the legislative body of each such city, signed by the voters of each city in number equal to not less than ten percent of voters who voted in the city at the last general municipal election therein, seeking consolidation of such contiguous cities. A copy of the petition shall be forwarded immediately by each city to the auditor of the county or counties within which that city is located.
The county auditor or auditors shall determine the sufficiency of the signatures in each petition within ten days of receipt of the copies and immediately notify the cities proposed to be consolidated of the sufficiency. If each of the petitions is found to have sufficient valid signatures, the auditor or auditors shall call a special election at which the question of whether such cities shall consolidate shall be submitted to the voters of each of such cities. If a general election is to be held more than ninety days but not more than one hundred eighty days after the filing of the last petition, the question shall be submitted at that election. Otherwise the question shall be submitted at a special election to be called for that purpose at the next special election date, as specified in RCW 29A.04.330, that occurs ninety or more days after the date when the last petition was filed.
If each of the petitions is found to have sufficient valid signatures, the auditor or auditors also shall notify the county legislative authority of each county in which the cities are located of the proposed consolidation.
Petitions shall conform with the requirements for form prescribed in RCW 35A.01.040, except different colored paper may be used on petitions circulated in the different cities. A legal description of the cities need not be included in the petitions.



ConsolidationForm of government.

A joint resolution or petition shall prescribe the form or plan of government of the proposed consolidated city, or shall provide that a ballot proposition to determine the form or plan of government shall be submitted to the voters of the cities proposed to be consolidated. The plans or forms of government include: Mayor/council, council/manager, and commission. If a commission form or plan of government is prescribed or chosen by the voters, the commission shall be subject to chapter 35.17 RCW and the noncharter code city shall be assumed to have had a commission plan or form of government prior to its becoming a noncharter code city, as provided in RCW 35A.02.130. However, three commissioners would be elected at the election provided in RCW 35.10.480.



ConsolidationAssumption of general obligation indebtedness.

A joint resolution or a petition may contain a proposal that a general obligation indebtedness of one or more of the cities proposed to be consolidated shall be assumed by the proposed consolidated city, in which event, the joint resolution or petition shall specify the improvement or service for which such general obligation indebtedness was incurred and state the amount of any such indebtedness then outstanding and the rate of interest payable thereon.



ConsolidationPublic meetings on proposalRole of boundary review board.

The county legislative authority, or the county legislative authorities jointly, shall set the date, time, and place for one or more public meetings on the proposed consolidation, and name a person or persons to chair the meetings. There shall be at least one public meeting in each county in which one or more of the cities proposed to be consolidated is located. A county legislative authority may name the members of the boundary review board, if one exists in the county, to chair one or more of the public meetings held in that county. In addition to any meeting held by the county, a boundary review board, if requested by a majority of the county legislative authority, may hold a public meeting on proposed consolidation of cities. The meeting shall be limited to receiving comments and written materials from citizens and city officials on the proposed consolidation of that portion of cities located in the county which the boundary review board serves. The record and proceedings of the boundary review board are supplemental and advisory to the consolidation of cities. If a boundary review board meets pursuant to this section, the boundary review board may include, as part of its record, comments pertaining to the probable environmental impact of the proposed consolidation. The record of the meeting and advisory comments of the board, if any, must be filed with the county legislative authority no later than twenty days before the date of the election at which the question of consolidating the cities is presented to the voters. The boundary review board shall not have any authority or jurisdiction on city consolidations under chapter 36.93 RCW. A public meeting shall be held at each specified date, time, and place. The public meetings of the county or the boundary review board shall be held at least twenty but not more than forty-five days before the date of the election at which the question of consolidating the cities is presented to the voters.
At each public meeting, each city proposed to be consolidated shall present testimony and written materials concerning the following topics: (1) The rate or rates of property taxes imposed by the city, and the purposes of these levies; (2) the excise taxes imposed by the city, including the tax bases and rates; and (3) the indebtedness of the city, including general indebtedness, both voter-approved and nonvoter-approved, as well as the city's special indebtedness, such as revenue bond indebtedness. Any interested person, including the officials of the cities proposed to be consolidated, may present information concerning the proposed consolidation and testify for or against the proposed consolidations.
Notice of each public meeting shall be published by the county within whose boundaries the public meeting is held in the normal manner notices of county hearings are published.



ConsolidationBallot questions.

If a proposal for assumption of indebtedness is to be submitted to the voters of a city in which the indebtedness did not originate, the proposal shall be separately stated and the ballots shall contain, as a separate proposition to be voted on, the words "For Assumption of Indebtedness to be paid by the levy of annual property taxes in excess of regular property taxes" and "Against Assumption of Indebtedness to be paid by the levy of annual property taxes in excess of regular property taxes" or words equivalent thereto. If the question of the form or plan of government is to be submitted to the voters, the question shall be separately stated and the ballots shall contain, as a separate proposition to be voted on, the option of a voter to select one of the three forms or plans of government. If the question of the name of the proposed consolidated city is to be submitted to the voters, the question shall be separately stated and the ballots shall contain, as a separate proposition to be voted on, the option of a voter to select one of the names of the proposed consolidated city.



ConsolidationCanvass of votes.

The county canvassing board in each county involved shall canvass the returns in each election. The votes cast in each of such cities shall be canvassed separately, and the statement shall show the whole number of votes cast, the number of votes cast in each city for consolidation, and the number of votes cast in each city against such consolidation. If a proposal for assumption or indebtedness was voted upon in a city in which the indebtedness did not originate, the statement shall show the number of votes cast in such a city for assumption of indebtedness and the number of votes cast against assumption of indebtedness. If a question of the form or plan of government was voted upon, the statement shall show the number of votes cast in each city for each of the optional forms or plans of government. If a name for the proposed consolidated city was voted upon, the statement shall show the number of votes cast in each city for each optional name. A certified copy of such statement shall be filed with the legislative body of each of the cities proposed to be consolidated.
If it appears from such statement of canvass that a majority of the votes cast in each of the cities were in favor of consolidation, the consolidation shall be authorized and shall be effective when the newly elected legislative body members assume office, as provided in RCW 35.10.480.
If a question of the form or plan of government was voted upon, that form or plan receiving the greatest combined number of votes shall become the form or plan of government for the consolidated city. If two or three of the forms or plans of government received the same highest number of votes, the form or plan of government shall be chosen by lot between those receiving the same highest number, where the mayor of the largest of the cities proposed to be consolidated draws the lot at a public meeting.
If a proposition to assume indebtedness was submitted to voters of a city in which the indebtedness did not originate, the proposition shall be deemed approved if approved by a majority of at least three-fifths of the voters of the city, and the number of persons voting on the proposition constitutes not less than forty percent of the number of votes cast in the city at the last preceding general election. Approval of the proposition authorizes annual property taxes to be levied on the property within the city in which the indebtedness did not originate that are in excess of regular property taxes. However, if the general indebtedness in question was incurred by action of a city legislative body, a proposition for assuming the indebtedness need only be approved by a simple majority vote of the voters of the city in which such indebtedness did not originate.
If a question of the name of the proposed consolidated city was voted upon, that name receiving the greatest combined number of votes shall become the name of the consolidated city. If two proposed names receive the same number of votes, the name shall be chosen by lot, where the mayor of the largest of the cities proposed to be consolidated draws the lot at a public meeting.



ConsolidationElections of officialsEffective date of consolidation.

If the voters of each of the cities proposed to consolidate approve the consolidation, elections to nominate and elect the elected officials of the consolidated city shall be held at times specified in RCW 35A.02.050. If the joint resolution or the petitions prescribe that councilmembers of the consolidated city shall be elected from wards, then the councilmembers shall be elected from wards under RCW 35A.12.180. Terms shall be established as if the city is initially incorporating.
The newly elected officials shall take office immediately upon their qualification. The effective date of the consolidation shall be when a majority of the newly elected members of the legislative body assume office. The clerk of the newly consolidated city shall transmit a duly certified copy of an abstract of the votes to authorize the consolidation and of the election of the newly elected city officials to the secretary of state and the office of financial management.



ConsolidationName of city.

A joint resolution or the petitions may prescribe the name of the proposed consolidated city or may provide that a ballot proposition to determine the name of the proposed consolidated city be submitted to the voters of the cities proposed to be consolidated. If two alternative names are submitted, the name receiving the simple majority vote of the voters voting on the question shall become the name of the consolidated city. If the name for the proposed consolidated city is not prescribed by the joint resolution or petition, or a proposition on the name is not submitted to the voters of the cities proposed to be consolidated, then the newly consolidated city shall be known as the city of . . . . . . (listing the names of the cities that were consolidated in alphabetical order). The legislative body of the newly consolidated city may present another name or two names for the newly consolidated city to the city voters for their approval or rejection at the next municipal general election held after the effective date of the consolidation. If only one alternative name is submitted, this alternative name shall become the name of the consolidated city if approved by a simple majority vote of the voters voting on the question. If two alternative names are submitted, the name receiving the simple majority vote of the voters voting on the question shall become the name of the consolidated city.



ConsolidationCosts of election and public meetings.

If consolidation is authorized, the costs of such election and the public meetings shall be borne by the city formed by such consolidation. If the consolidation is not authorized, the costs of election and the public meetings shall be borne proportionately by each city affected, in that ratio in which the number of inhabitants residing in the total area in which the election was held, as shown by the figures released at the most recent state or federal census or by a determination of the office of financial management.



ConsolidationTransfer of fire department employees.

Upon the consolidation of two or more cities or code cities, any employee of the fire department of the former city or cities who (1) was at the time of consolidation employed exclusively or principally in performing the powers, duties, and functions which are to be performed by the fire department of the consolidated city or code city, as the case may be, (2) will, as a direct consequence of consolidation, be separated from the employ of the former city, code city or town, and (3) can perform the duties and meet the minimum requirements of the position to be filled, then such employee may transfer employment to the fire department of the consolidated city, as provided in this section and RCW 35.10.520 and 35.10.530.
For purposes of this section and RCW 35.10.520 and 35.10.530, employee means an individual whose employment has been terminated because of a consolidation of two or more cities, code cities or towns.

NOTES:

Effective dateLegislative study1986 c 254 §§ 1-3: "Sections 1 through 3 of this act shall take effect July 1, 1987. The appropriate committees of the senate and house of representatives shall conduct a study of the transfer rights of employees during the consolidation of cities and code cities and make recommendations to the legislature at the start of the 1987 legislative session." [ 1986 c 254 § 16.]



ConsolidationTransfer of fire department employeesRights and benefits.

(1) An eligible employee may transfer into the civil service system of the consolidated city or code city by filing a written request with the civil service commission of the consolidated city. Upon receipt of such request by the civil service commission the transfer of employment shall be made. The employee so transferring will (a) be on probation for the same period as are new employees in the position filled, but if the transferring employee has already completed a probationary period as a firefighter prior to the transfer, then the employee may only be terminated during the probationary period for failure to adequately perform assigned duties, not meeting the minimum qualifications of the position, or behavior that would otherwise be subject to disciplinary action, (b) be eligible for promotion no later than after completion of the probationary period, (c) receive a salary at least equal to that of other new employees in the position filled, and (d) in all other matters, such as retirement, sick leave, and vacation, have, within the city or code city civil service system, all the rights, benefits, and privileges to which he or she would have been entitled as a member of the consolidated city fire department from the beginning of his or her employment with the former city or code city fire department: PROVIDED, That for purposes of layoffs by the consolidated city or code city, only the time of service accrued with the consolidated city or code city shall apply unless an agreement is reached between the collective bargaining representatives of the employees of the consolidating fire agencies and consolidated agencies and the consolidating and consolidated fire agencies. A record of the employee's service with the former city or code city fire department shall be transmitted to the applicable civil service commission and shall be credited to such employee as a part of the period of employment in the consolidated city fire department. All accrued benefits are transferable provided that the recipient agency provides comparable benefits. All benefits shall then accrue based on the combined seniority of each employee in the recipient agency.
(2) As many of the transferring employees shall be placed upon the payroll of the consolidated city or code city fire department as the department determines are needed to provide services. These needed employees shall be taken in order of greatest seniority from any of the seniority lists of the consolidating city or code city and the remaining employees who transfer as provided in this section and RCW 35.10.510 and 35.10.530 shall head the list for employment in the civil service system in order of their seniority, to the end that they shall be the first to be reemployed in the fire department when appropriate positions become available: PROVIDED, That employees who are not immediately hired by the city, code city, or town shall be placed on a reemployment list for a period not to exceed thirty-six months unless a longer period is authorized by an agreement reached between the collective bargaining representatives of the employees of the consolidating fire agencies and consolidated fire agency and the consolidating and consolidated fire agencies.
(3) The consolidated city or code city shall retain the right to select the fire chief and assistant fire chiefs regardless of seniority.

NOTES:

Effective date1994 c 73: See note following RCW 35.10.365.
Effective dateLegislative study1986 c 254 §§ 1-3: See note following RCW 35.10.510.



ConsolidationTransfer of fire department employeesNoticeTime limitation.

If, as a result of consolidation of two or more cities, or code cities, any employee is laid off who is eligible to transfer to the city fire department pursuant to this section and RCW 35.10.510 and 35.10.520, the city fire department shall notify the employee of the right to so transfer and the employee shall have ninety days to transfer employment to the consolidating city, or code city fire department.

NOTES:

Effective dateLegislative study1986 c 254 §§ 1-3: See note following RCW 35.10.510.



ConsolidationCreation of community municipal corporation.

Voters of one or more of the cities that are proposed to be consolidated may have a ballot proposition submitted to them authorizing the simultaneous creation of a community municipal corporation and election of community councilmembers as provided for under chapter 35.14 RCW. The joint resolution that initiates a consolidation under RCW 35.10.410 may provide for the question of whether a community municipal corporation shall be created to be submitted to the voters of one or more of the cities that are proposed to be consolidated as a separate ballot measure from the ballot measure authorizing the consolidation or as part of the same ballot measure authorizing the consolidation. The petitions that are signed by the voters of each of the cities that are proposed to be consolidated under RCW 35.10.420 may provide for the question of whether to create a community municipal corporation to be submitted to the voters of that city as a separate ballot measure from the ballot measure authorizing the consolidation or as part of the same ballot measure authorizing the consolidation.
The ballots shall contain the words "For consolidation and creation of community municipal corporation" and "Against consolidation and creation of community municipal corporation," or "For creation of community municipal corporation" and "Against creation of community municipal corporation," as the case may be. Approval of either optional ballot proposition shall be by simple majority vote of the voters voting on the proposition, but the consolidation must be authorized by the voters of each city proposed to be consolidated before a community municipal corporation is created.



ConsolidationWards.

Unless a commission form of government is prescribed or submitted to the voters under RCW 35.10.430, a joint resolution or petition may prescribe that wards be used to elect the councilmembers of the consolidated city. The joint resolution or petition must contain a map of the proposed consolidated city that clearly delineates the boundaries of each ward. Each ward in the proposed consolidated city shall contain approximately the same population. To the greatest extent possible, the integrity of the boundaries of the cities that are proposed to be consolidated shall be respected when the wards are drawn so that the territory within each city is: (1) Included within the fewest number of wards, to the extent the city has a population that is greater than the maximum population established for each ward; or (2) included wholly within one ward, to the extent the city has a population that is equal to or less than the maximum population established for each ward. After the election specified in RCW 35.10.480, election wards may be modified in the manner specified in RCW 35A.12.180.