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Campus Facilities Use and Campus Solicitation

Oct. 25, 2012

As an educational institution, Baylor's property is exempt from state property tax, but only so long as the use of the property is exclusively for educational purposes. Use of Baylor property for activities that do not advance Baylor's educational mission creates a risk that Baylor's property tax exemption could be lost, and the nature of the activity could be inconsistent with Baylor's exemption from income tax.

This potential financial exposure is one consideration underlying Baylor's policy on Campus Facilities Use and Campus Solicitation Policy, which is attached. Another consideration is that Baylor's property is privately owned. Since it is not public property, Baylor can and does generally prevent public access for public use, such as commercial speech or free speech. These considerations justify the policy requirements that:

The use or solicitation must integrate or accommodate the private aims of the University as a Christian institution of higher learning as those aims are specifically articulated from time to time. Any use or solicitation inconsistent with these aims will be excluded.

Additionally,

The use or solicitation must advance the educational functions of the University, or be, at a minimum, incidental, e.g., necessary and conducive to the educational functions of the University.

This expression of policy indicates that the use or solicitation in and of itself must advance the educational functions; it would, therefore, be inappropriate to permit use or solicitation for the sole purpose of making money by selling access to the students, to the facilities, or to other resources. Consequently, the policy establishes a process through which Baylor makes a determination that the policy requirements are met. In general terms, the process is initiated as follows:

1. Individual students or groups submit requests to the Department of Student Activities.

2. Individual faculty or staff submit requests to the Division of Human Resources.

3. A Baylor division contracting with another party submits requests to the Office of General Counsel.

4. All other off-campus requests are to be submitted to the University Host.

Baylor has established a committee, the Campus Solicitation Committee, to ultimately review such requests and to ensure consistent application of the policy.

A separate process exists for some types of use:

1. Posting for solicitation or sale of personal items may be made on designated bulletin boards in the Student Center or Residence Halls.

2. Postings may be made on designated bulletin boards as permitted by the administrative head responsible for the designated bulletin board. Individual students or student groups must first obtain approval of the Department of Student Activities.

The complete policy, Campus Facilities Use and Campus Solicitation Policy, may be found here.

Questions may be submitted to the appropriate office identified in the policy.