Frequently Asked Questions

State Capitol Events - Frequently Asked Questions

1. How much does the permit cost?

There is no fee for the permit. An insurance bond may be required for large groups or special events.

2. How far in advance can I request a permit? (Title 13 CCR 1855 a)

Permits may be requested no more than one year in advance and must be submitted a minimum of 10 business days prior to the commencement of the event. Permits are granted on a first-come, first-served basis.  No dates are held without a completed application.

3. How do I know if I need insurance? (Title 13 CCR 1855 b)

The person or organization who holds the permit is financially responsibility for the event. Insurance may be required for events on state property due to the size or complexity of the event. Events of more than 500 participants around the Capitol structure or events of more than 100 participants in the botanical garden area of the Capitol may be required to have a one million dollar insurance bond through the Department of General Services. The State reserves the right to evaluate smaller events on a case by case basis involving State property where insurance may be required.

If you are required to submit a one million dollar general liability insurance bond, it should be made out to the California State Department of General Services (DGS), State Capitol Park, and include the date/time of the event. A copy must be received by the permit office prior to the event. All events utilizing tent/structures must be coordinated through the Capitol Permits office.

4. Will I have access to power?

There is power at most locations around the building and in select areas in the park.  Contact the Capitol Permits office for further questions.

5. Can Alcoholic beverages be served at an event?

The consumption of alcohol on Capitol Grounds is prohibited, per California Penal Code 172 unless all the following conditions are met:

  • The event is organized and operated by a nonprofit organization that is located in the City of Sacramento for purposes of increasing awareness of the Sacramento region and promoting education about the food and wine of the Sacramento region.
  • Tickets for the event are sold on a presale basis only and are not available for sale at the event.
  • Each attendee has purchased a ticket for the event, regardless of whether the attendee consumes any food or alcohol at the event.
  • Alcohol is not sold at the event, and any orders or any other activities that would constitute exposure for sale of alcoholic beverages do not occur at the event, except as authorized by this subdivision.

Permit Applicants are required to submit proof of compliance when the application is submitted.

6. Does the California Highway Patrol provide equipment for the event? (PA System, Stage, Etc.)

No. The California Highway Patrol does not provide any equipment for the event.  You are responsible for all equipment used during the event.

7. Where do I park? Are any vehicles allowed on Capitol grounds for unloading?

No vehicles will be allowed past the security fence around the Capitol. You must park on the city streets. If you have any special parking requests, please contact Sacramento City On-Street Parking at (916) 808-5874.

8. Can I film on outside the Capitol?

Yes. Filming for private use is permitted, but all requests for commercial filming on state property need to go through California Film Commission. See Links

9. Does my permit give me access to inside the Capitol?

No.  Permission for events/photos inside the Capitol is only granted by the Joint Rules Committee.  They may be reached at (916) 319-2800.  Written permission must be granted prior to any activity inside the Capitol.

10. Am I responsible for the clean up after the event? (Title 13 CCR 1855 b)

Yes.  The rules require permit holders to ensure the grounds are left clean, in the condition found, after the event.  Failure to remove all trash could result in financial liability to the permit holder.  Every effort should be made to separate and recycle the waste.

11. What is a security monitor and how many do I need? (Title 13 CCR 1855 b)

One (1) security person shall be designated for each fifty (50) persons expected to be in attendance.  Each member of security shall wear a distinctive emblem, insignia, or article of apparel at all times during the activity identifying them as security. A security monitor may be a security professional or a designated member of your event. CHP personnel may be contracted for security and are required for events serving alcohol.

12. Are there rules for the signs and posters I can bring to the Capitol? (Title 13 CCR 1862)

Yes. Carrying, transporting or using signs, posters, placards or banners exceeding thirty inches (30”) in size in or on any state building or grounds is prohibited unless prior written permission has been obtained from the CHP. The size of the handles or supports for such signs, posters, placards or banners shall be limited to one-fourth inch (1/4”) in thickness by three-fourth inch (3/4”) in width and shall extend no more than eighteen inches (18”) beyond a single exterior edge of such sign, poster, placard or banner except with prior written permission of the CHP. All handles or supports shall be made of wood without exception.  Any sign handles found in violation will not be allowed on the property.

All such signs, posters, placards, or banners shall be hand carried and not in any way affixed, fastened, or attached to the premises. They shall not be self-supporting, placed for display; or leaned against any wall, partition, or other portion of a state building or grounds. All signs, posters, placards or banners may not be left behind after the event and must not be disposed of in state trash receptacles. The carrying of such signs, posters, placards or banners in a way that obstructs freedom of passage through, or in state buildings or upon state grounds is prohibited.

13. Are physical activities allowed at the capitol? (Title 13 CCR 1867, 1869)

Yes, however, all activities which involve running, jumping, tackling, strenuous activity or physical contact between parties is prohibited in State Capitol Park. This includes, but is not limited to, football, baseball, Frisbee, golf, catch, soccer, and devices used for jumping in or upon.  Operation and use of bicycles, roller skates/blades, skateboards, and other wheeled conveyances are prohibited on state property. (Read section for exceptions)

14. Can I hold an event to raise money at the Capitol? (Title 13 CCR 1855 b) (GC section 84309)

Sales of any kind on Capitol grounds are not permitted.  This includes collecting a donation in exchange for goods and/or services. 


Donations can be collected on Capitol grounds as long as the following conditions are met:

  • The group requesting a donation must have a valid permit to hold an event at the Capitol.
  • The group requesting a donation must have a valid 501(C) (3) – Federal Tax Exempt Form.  The name on the form must match the name collecting the donation.  The Federal Tax ID must be made available to those who make a donation.
  • No donations may be actively solicited.
  • No goods or services may be given in exchange of a donation. 

No organization holding a permit may sell, rent or collect monies from another group or individual for booth space or participation costs.  


All political fundraising is prohibited in or on state property.

15. Are fires allowed on State grounds? (Title 13 CCR 1864)

No, all fires are prohibited on State property. This includes BBQs, candles, open flames, and anyflame producing equipment of any type. Any exception must be approved by the CHP and the State Fire Marshal.

16. Does the American’s with Disabilities Act (ADA) codes apply during the event?

Yes. You must comply with the Federal ADA codes.

17. Can I change or adjust the ground surface?

There are specific guidelines for any adjustments of the ground surface, including carpet. Please contact the Capitol Permits office for additional information. All plans must be approved by the Capitol Permits office.

18. Can I use decorations for the event? (Title 13 CCR 1863)

Yes, limited decorations are allowed. No decorations are to be hung, tacked, taped or in any way affixed to trees, shrubbery, fencing, or lamp posts on state property.

19. Are there any restrictions for the use of Awnings, Tents or E-Z Ups on the Capitol Grounds?

Yes. Water barrels and ground stakes are prohibited for use in Capitol Park. However, you may use sand bags or concrete weights to secure the structure. The size of the structure and placement on the grounds must be coordinated through the Capitol Permits office.

20. Are dogs allowed at the Capitol? (Title 13 CCR 1866)

Dogs, cats, and other domesticated animals shall be on leash while on state property. Dogs, cats, and other domesticated animals are prohibited inside state buildings (Refer to California Code of Regulations for exceptions). If you wish to bring any other animal onto the grounds you will need prior written permission from the Capitol Permits office.

21. Will the watering schedule be altered for my event?

No, unless you make contact with the Department of General Services (DGS) and are granted a change. Please contact the Capitol Permits office.