- Can units within the University conduct raffles as part of a fundraising event?
- As a state agency the University is subject to provisions in the Wisconsin Constitution prohibiting the state from conducting gambling games in any form, except the state lottery. The Wisconsin Constitution explicitly recognizes raffles as a form of gambling. Therefore, units within the University cannot conduct raffles as part of a fundraising event. This prohibition applies to all games commonly considered to be forms of gambling other than the state lottery, including, but not limited to, bingo, blackjack, poker, roulette, craps, etc.
- Can units within the University partner with third-parties to conduct raffles as part of a fundraising event, with the raffle proceeds going to the University?
- The Wisconsin Constitution permits certain types of organizations to obtain a license from the Wisconsin Department of Administration to conduct raffles. However, such organizations are prohibited from paying the proceeds from raffles to any other person or organization. As such, units within the University cannot partner with third-party organizations as a workaround to avoid the prohibition on the state conducting raffles.
Note: the constitutional prohibition on conducting gambling games other than the lottery only applies to the state. While the University and its units are part of the state, not all organizations that operate on campus are. If you have questions about whether this advice applies to your organization please contact OLA at 263-7400.