“Count the service” bill for State Patrol recruitment heard in Senate Ways and Means

OLYMPIASB 5601, a bill making it easier for members of the Washington State Patrol to count military service toward their retirement, had a public hearing in the Senate Ways and Means Committee today.  Senator Steve O’Ban, R-University Place, is the prime sponsor of the bill.

SB 5601 would change the law to allow any member of the Washington State Patrol Retirement System (WSPRS) with 25 years of service to count up to five years of military service toward their retirement, whether the uniformed service was interruptive or not.

Under current law, participants in WSPRS Plan 1 may have their military service credited whether or not the individual left the employ of the state to enter the uniformed services.  Members of WSPRS Plan 2 also may receive military service credit but the law requires that the military service be interruptive, which means the individual would have to have left state employ in order to enter the uniformed services. 

“The State Patrol needs dependable and capable recruits,” O’Ban said. “What better source than our veterans?  I see no good reason to discriminate against them simply because of when they served their country. The state should count the service. This reform is a win for the State Patrol and a win for veterans.”