Q May a municipality provide manpower and equipment to deliver products for a concession stand operated by a “booster club,” while allowing the booster club to charge both admission and registration fees for viewing or participating in a recreational league on city schools’ fields/courts with neither the municipality nor the school receiving any portion of the proceeds?

A Yes, the municipality may provide manpower and equipment if the municipality determines, consistent with fact, that doing so promotes the municipality’s recreational programs. Prior opinions permitted non-profit volunteer associations to use city-owned and maintained fields for various events and allowed those non-profit entities to collect various fees such as participant fees, tournament fees, and proceeds from concessions which were deposited into private association accounts. The same rationale applies to fields/courts owned by city schools. In order to avoid any question regarding potential illegal donations, safeguards should be put in place to ensure all such funds are used in the promotion of the league and not to benefit an individual. The municipal governing authorities may, as a condition of participation, wish to require periodic accountings from each participating “booster club” to ensure that the proceeds from the fees and concessions are being spent only for permissible purposes such as jerseys, trophies, insurance premiums, and other expenditures that further the city’s recreational programs. (Attorney General’s Opinion to Austin, May 13, 2016)