Q May municipalities donate money to a local chamber of commerce to conduct a feasibility study for a new business, and if so, is the amount of the donation capped at a certain level?

A Yes, the municipality may donate to the local chamber of commerce and the amount which may be donated is uncapped by state statute. A municipality is not required to comply with a request to expend funds for a feasibility study, but Section 21-17-5, the “home-rule” statute grants the authority to do so, provided that it finds such expenditure will benefit the municipality. Prior opinions concerning feasibility studies did not contemplate the “home-rule” statute and have been modified accordingly. Sections 21-19-44, 21-19-44.1, and 17-3-1 grant the authority to donate to a local chamber of commerce. If the donation is completed using the authority of 17-3-1, donations under this section are capped at one (1) mill of the cities valuation. Sections 21-19-44 and 21-19-44.1 do not impose any monetary limitations. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Barton, July 24, 2015)