770 F.2d 773 (9th Cir. 1985), 84-2766, Bunyan v. Camacho

Docket Nº:C.A. No. 84-2766.
Citation:770 F.2d 773
Party Name:William K. BUNYAN, Plaintiff-Appellant, v. Luis M. CAMACHO, Don C. Warner, Bertha L. Duenas, Frank C. Cruz and Jesus B. Paulino, Defendants-Appellees.
Case Date:September 03, 1985
Court:United States Courts of Appeals, Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

Page 773

770 F.2d 773 (9th Cir. 1985)

William K. BUNYAN, Plaintiff-Appellant,


Luis M. CAMACHO, Don C. Warner, Bertha L. Duenas, Frank C.

Cruz and Jesus B. Paulino, Defendants-Appellees.

C.A. No. 84-2766.

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

September 3, 1985

Argued and Submitted June 13, 1985.

David A. Mair, Mair & Mair, Agana, Guam, for plaintiff-appellant.

J.U. Torres, Agana, Guam, for defendants-appellees.

On Appeal From the United States District Court for the District of Guam.

Before SNEED, BEEZER, Circuit Judges, and RAFEEDIE, [*] District Judge.

Page 774

BEEZER, Circuit Judge:

This is an appeal from a summary judgment upholding the constitutionality of a Guam statute that grants retroactive retirement credit to local government employees who were Guam residents before they started college. Appellant challenges the district court's holding that the statute is rationally related to a legitimate governmental purpose. We reverse.


In 1978, the Guam Legislature enacted the following statute:

Any bona fide resident of Guam, who receives his graduate or undergraduate degree from an accredited institution and is employed by the government of Guam, after obtaining such degree, may claim retirement credit equal to the period of time, including vacations, which a full-time student would normally take to complete the program leading to the degree he received, ... by paying to the Fund the appropriate member's and employer's shares ...; provided, however, that this Section shall apply only to those persons:

(a) who received their degrees after June 1, 1945;

(b) who were bona fide residents of Guam at the time they began their undergraduate studies; and

(c) who had been employed by the Government for at least ten (10) years as full-time, locally hired employees.

4 Guam Code Ann. Sec. 8113. Appellant William Bunyan, a high school science teacher who moved to Guam in 1963 after he had already finished college, meets all the statutory requirements for obtaining retroactive retirement credit except that he was not a Guam resident at the time he began his undergraduate studies. He was therefore denied such credit.

Appellant brought a civil rights action against appellees, the members of the Board of Trustees for the Government of Guam Retirement Fund. 42 U.S.C. Sec. 1983. The complaint alleged that subsection (b) of the statute violates the Equal Protection Clause of the U.S. Constitution, and requested declaratory and injunctive relief. The district court granted summary judgment in favor of appellees, holding that the retrospective application of the statute to persons already employed by the local government was rationally related to the legitimate governmental purpose of

express[ing] the gratitude of the Territory of Guam by conferring benefits to those Guamanian...

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