Here is the latest guidance on the use if Bingo funds by possessors of Texas Bingo Licenses.
VFW District 20 Donations Chairman
Subject: RE: Expenses for Bingo Funds & Positive cash flow.
Thanks for your help clarifying this issue. I am confident that all of our Posts are in compliance with the pertinent State Administrative Codes.
Under the Bingo Rules :
1. There is not a percentage amount that the Bingo Unit has to distribute to the charities on a quarterly basis. There was a rule in the past. Now for charities to keep their license they have to receive positive cash flow over four rolling quarter to keep their license, if they do not then the Unit has to request a waiver and give good reasons as to why it has not been positive and what they are doing to correct the problem. If the Bingo Commission does not feel it is justified the charities could loose their license.
2. You asked if the VFW Posts may use bingo funds for travel and maintaining the Post:
The Post may use funds to maintain the post as part of their charitable purpose. They need the post to have facilities to carry out their charitable purpose. So there is a place for the post to meet with veterans to assist them with issues they encounter and to carry out training.
With regard to Travel. Bingo funds may be used to carry out your charitable purpose and as part of your 501(c) filing it lists your charitable purpose. Training of your members I think is part of that purpose. Bingo Funds are to be spent in Texas for your charitable purpose. For travel, if it is part of your charitable purpose, and you purchased the tickets in Texas, that would make it part of your charitable purpose. If you purchase hotel accommodation for the training meetings out of state it would be covered if it complies with the Texas Administrative Code Sub chapter E 402.502 C 11 A & B below.
Texas Administrative Code Sub chapter E 402.502 C (11)
(11) Reimbursement or direct payment for member or employee travel expenses will only be considered as used for the charitable purposes of the organization if the following records are provided to the Commission upon request:
(A) the itinerary of a seminar, convention, or retreat showing that the purpose of the seminar, convention, or retreat was primarily to discuss the charitable functions and purposes consistent with the 26 U.S.C. §501 tax exemption of the organization or the purposes or objective for which the organization qualifies as an authorized organization; and
(B) the original or true and correct copies of receipts and cancelled checks showing the date and amount of the contribution for actual out-of-pocket reasonable or necessary expenses such as hotel, airline tickets, meals, etc., and the corresponding request for payment or reimbursement maintained by the organization.
Hope this answered your questions.
Eddie A. Heinemeier|
3239 Rustic Oak
San Antonio, TX 78261
(210) 296-9944 cell
830) 980-2694 fax