Office of the President

Alcohol Service at Special Events; Supersedes EM 99-011

Executive Memorandum 18-009 May 10, 2018

From: Gayle E. Hutchinson, President

Subject: Alcohol Service at Special Events: Supersedes EM 99-011

Upon the recommendation of the Academic Senate and the concurrence of the Provost, I approve the policy for serving alcohol at University sponsored Special Events. This change is effective immediately.


The possession, consumption, service, or sale of alcoholic beverages on the California State University, Chico campus, in campus-owned facilities, or at University and auxiliary sponsored (related) events is generally prohibited as a matter of institutional policy. This document establishes the guidelines for occasions when alcohol may be served or sold at on-campus and off-campus University and auxiliary sponsored events.

The policy does not apply to course related classroom activities.


Events or occasions where alcohol is approved to be served or sold are termed “Special Events” and must be approved by the Director of University Public Engagement in counsel with the University Risk Manager. Special Events are limited to the following:

Award Ceremonies
Alumni Events
Advancement Events
Chico Performances Events
North State Symphony Concerts
Museum Openings
Civic and Cultural Events

Alcohol use at Special Events will adhere to the following criteria:

Alcohol consumption is not the primary focus of the activity and the success of the event is not dependent upon the service or sale of alcohol.

Members of the campus community and event guests are expected to act responsibly regarding the use of alcoholic beverages.

The service or sale of alcohol in campus facilities is subject to campus policy and federal and state laws.

Choosing not to drink alcohol is as socially acceptable as choosing to drink alcohol.

Excessive drinking or drunkenness is not condoned.

Intoxication is no excuse for misconduct or infringing upon the rights of others.


The office of University Public Engagement (UPE) in counsel with the University Risk Manager will review and approve all requests for sale or service of alcohol for both on-campus events and off-campus University related events. For auxiliary sponsored events, additional approval is required from the appropriate auxiliary administrator.

The office of UPE in counsel with the University Risk Manager will apply for all required California Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) licenses for on campus events, which will be secured through the CSU, Chico Research Foundation.

The purchase of alcohol for on campus events will be managed by the office of UPE under a CSU, Chico Research Foundation account. The sale or service of alcohol on campus by UPE Concessions staff will be insured through the CSU Auxiliary Organization Risk Management Association.


Alcohol Use Request forms are available at the UPE office or online at 

      Requests must be submitted 21 days prior to event.

An on-campus or off-campus University related event at which alcohol is to be served or sold must be sponsored by a unit, department or university-recognized faculty/staff organization unless the facility is leased to an outside entity.

The person submitting the Alcohol Use Request application must be a University or auxiliary employee, or the request must be co-signed by a University or auxiliary employee.

Requests require the second approval signature of a senior administrator of the college, department, division or auxiliary hosting the event.

Events that are open to the public or where alcohol is sold require an appropriate Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC) license.

Alcohol is not permitted at student hosted events on campus.


On campus service of alcoholic beverages may only be provided by UPE Concessions staff or a licensed and insured third party vendor.

Off campus service or sale of alcohol may only be provided by authorized auxiliary employees or volunteers authorized to serve or sell by their respective auxiliary, or by an insured third party vendor.

No University employee or volunteer may serve or sell alcoholic beverages on-campus or at off-campus University related events

Food must be available throughout the time alcohol is served.

Non-alcoholic beverages must be as readily available as alcoholic beverages.


For on campus events, alcohol can only be served or sold at designated locations on campus.

Director of University Public Engagement in counsel with the University Risk Manager will annually provide a list of recommended locations to Cabinet for approval.

The possession, consumption, sale, or transportation of alcohol in campus housing facilities is governed by University Housing and Food Service policy.

Alcohol use in leased and rented campus facilities may be governed by a separate agreement as to possession, consumption, sale, service and transportation. The level of insurance coverage will be determined on a per case basis.


The maximum time alcohol can be served or sold at special events will not exceed three hours.

Sale or service must not begin before the start of the event and must end 30 minutes before the special event end time.

Performance events start when doors or gates open.

Sale at Chico Performances and North State Symphony events will start 45 minutes prior to the published event start time and continue through the end of the last intermission or 30 minutes before the end of the event.


For closed events (invitation only and not open to the public) access to the event is restricted to invited participants.

The majority of the participants attending a special event must be 21 years of age or older.

Identification must be checked as needed to ensure that no participant under 21 years of age is sold or served an alcoholic beverage.

Procurement for Sale or Service

Purchase of alcohol for on-campus, approved events will be facilitated by UPE Concessions or an insured third party vendor.

Purchase of alcohol for off-campus approved events must comply with all relevant auxiliary guidelines or must be facilitated by an insured third party vendor.

Any donated alcohol that is to be served or sold at a University or auxiliary sponsored event must follow the appropriate campus or auxiliary guidelines for donations.

No Associated Students Activity Fee or Instructionally Related Activity funds may be expended for the purchase of alcohol.

No State General Fund dollars may be expended for the purchase of alcohol.


Any advertising conducted in conjunction with an event involving alcohol is subject to CSU Executive Order 1109, and CSU, Chico Executive Memorandum 94-050, or any subsequent, relevant orders or memoranda.


Tailgate parties are not permitted on the CSU, Chico campus.

Auctions and Raffles

Per the Alcoholic and Beverage Control requirements, a standard one-day license is required when unopened alcohol is sold or given away through the purchase of raffle tickets or admission into the event. The sponsoring department and event planner must verify that recipients of the unopened alcohol are at least 21 years of age. Unopened alcohol cannot be given away at events which are open to the public.

Consequences for Violating Alcohol Policy

Divisions, colleges, departments, auxiliaries, groups, organizations, or employees found to be in violation of the Campus Alcohol Policy may lose the privilege to serve alcohol at future events and are subject to University disciplinary action and/or civil penalties for which there is no established maximum.

Review EM 18-009 (PDF) supporting paperwork.