Agenda Item
Docket No. 23-812
Advisory Opinion request from Wade Rousse, Executive Vice President of McNeese Foundation, regarding a potential contract between Lake Charles Toyota, owned by Rep. Phillip Tarver, and the McNeese Foundation.
The McNeese Foundation ("Foundation") is a private, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization established to support scholarships through endowments at McNeese State University ("University"). The Foundation's mission includes support for endowed faculty professorships, centers for teaching excellence, cultural programming, athletic enhancement, and other projects linked to the University. As part of this mission, the Foundation manages the McNeese Athletic Foundation as a subcommittee.

Phillip Tarver is the elected member of the Louisiana House of Representatives for District 36. His first term ends on January 8, 2024. However, Rep. Tarver was recently re-elected, with his second term set to expire on January 10, 2028.

Tarver Motor Company, Inc. operates Lake Charles Toyota, which is owned by Rep. Tarver, who owns 90% of the entity, while his father-in-law and two sons own the other 10%.

The Foundation and Lake Charles Toyota would like to enter into a Sponsorship Agreement to support the University's athletic program for the 2024-2025 year. Pursuant to the Sponsorship Agreement, Lake Charles Toyota would make monthly payments to the Foundation, as well as provide for the use of a certain number of vehicles by University athletic coaches. In exchange, Lake Charles Toyota will receive marketing and branding as the official dealership of McNeese baseball, softball, and basketball, promotions in both print and radio advertisements, and a certain number of tickets to University athletic events.
La. R.S. 42:1113(D) provides that no legislator and no legal entity of a legislator shall enter into any contract with state government.

La. R.S. 42:1113(D)(1)(a)(iii) defines "legal entity of a person" to mean any corporation, partnership, or other legal entity in which a legislator owns an interest of greater than five percent.

La. R.S. 42:1113(D)(1)(a)(v) defines "state government" to mean any branch, agency, department, or institution of state government or with the Louisiana Insurance Guaranty Association, the Louisiana Health Insurance Guaranty Association, or any other state quasi-public entity created in law.

La. R.S. 42:1102(14) defines "Legislator" to many any person holding office int he Senate or House of Representatives of the Louisiana Legislature which is filled by the vote of the appropriate electorate.
Adopt the proposed advisory opinion.
Assigned Attorney: David Bordelon
2023-812 - AO
2023-812- Email W Rousse 092123 - Attach - LAKE CHARLES TOYOTA FY25
2023-812- Prior Advisory Opinions - Foundations
2023-812 - Advisory Opinion Draft - Rousse