(1) COUNTY AUTHORITY TO CREATE; PURPOSE.–Each county of the state is hereby vested with the authority to create a county fine arts council, hereinafter referred to as “council” or “arts council,” a public agency corporate and politic, for the purposes of:
(a) Stimulating greater governmental and public awareness and appreciation of the importance of the arts to the people of Florida.
Terms Used In Florida Statutes 265.32
- Ex officio: Literally, by virtue of one's office.
- Quorum: The number of legislators that must be present to do business.
(b) Encouraging and facilitating greater and more efficient use of governmental and private resources for the development and support of the arts.
(c) Encouraging and facilitating opportunities for Florida residents to participate in artistic activities.
(d) Promoting the development of Florida artists, arts institutions, community organizations sponsoring arts activities, and audiences.
(e) Surveying and assessing the needs of the arts, artists, arts institutions, community organizations sponsoring arts activities, and people of this state relating to the arts.
(f) Supporting and facilitating the preservation and growth of the state’s artistic resources.
(g) Contracting for artistic services, performances, and exhibits.
(h) Developing a center or complex of physical facilities for the use of the arts.
(i) Providing financial and technical assistance to artists, arts institutions, and audiences.
(j) Otherwise serving the citizens of the county and state in the realm of the arts.
The purposes provided by this section are hereby deemed to be public purposes.
(2) MEMBERSHIP AND ORGANIZATION.–
(a) Initial members of the arts council shall be appointed by the board of county commissioners and shall be selected in such manner as to assure that the general arts needs of the people in the county may best be served. It shall be remembered that each council member will be charged with the responsibility of serving the best interests of the arts in the county within the purposes of this act, and no council member shall view his or her role as that of representing any particular geographic area of the county, interest group, arts institution, community organization, or audience. No individual committed to, or owing allegiance to, any particular arts faction shall be eligible to serve on the council.
(b)1. If a county is creating a council under the provisions of this act, the arts council shall consist of 15 members. Vacancies which exist on the council shall be filled by the board of county commissioners. However, in filling any vacancy which occurs, the board of county commissioners shall select the replacement council member from a list of three candidates to be submitted by the remaining members of the council. In the event that none of the three candidates suggested meets commission approval, the council shall submit another and entirely different list for commission consideration. This process shall continue until a suitable replacement has been found to fill the existing or anticipated vacancy.
2. The council shall make the general public aware of any vacancy which occurs, or which is expected, by complying with the notice and publication requirements established in paragraph (f). The council shall then consider suggestions or recommendations made by members of the public; representative civic, labor, and cultural associations; and groups concerned with encouraging the development and appreciation of the arts before submitting any list of candidates to the board of county commissioners.
3. There shall be an ex officio member who shall be a member of the board of county commissioners to be designated by it. The council may authorize additional ex officio members from any municipality within the county which it determines deserves representation, and any such member shall be designated by the city commission from its membership. The council may also authorize other ex officio members from the general public when such membership will serve the best interests of the arts and help carry out the objectives and duties of the council.
(c) The term of office for each member shall be 4 years. All members of the council shall be qualified electors residing in the county.
(d) No council member who serves two full terms shall be reappointed to the council during the 2-year period following expiration of his or her term.
(e) No council member may receive compensation for his or her services, but each member may be reimbursed in accordance with chapter 112 for actual expenses necessarily incurred in the performance of his or her duties.
(f) For purposes of this section, notice and publication requirements shall be deemed to have been met by daily advertisement in a newspaper, or in any of the electronic media, with countywide circulation or exposure for a period of 3 days at least 10 days prior to the taking of the intended action.
(g) Council members may be removed for cause, and continued and unexcused absence shall constitute a form of, but not limit, such cause for removal. The removed member’s replacement shall be chosen as provided in paragraph (b). Removal shall only be accomplished by a two-thirds vote of the remaining council members.
(3) COUNCIL OFFICERS.–The council shall elect annually one of the members of the council to be its chair. No member of the council may serve as its chair for more than two terms. The council may annually elect such other officers as it deems appropriate.
(4) EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR.–The council may appoint an executive director who shall be a full-time employee and shall serve at the pleasure of, and at a salary fixed by, the council. The executive director shall carry out the policies and programs established by the council, shall employ, subject to council approval, such full-time and part-time staff and consultants as appropriate to carry out those policies and programs, and shall be in charge of the day-to-day operations of those policies and programs. The executive director may be empowered by the council to sign contracts, leases, and other agreements on its behalf.
(5) POWERS OF THE COUNCIL.–Within the limit of funds available to it and the conditions set forth in this act, the council shall have all legal powers necessary and appropriate to effectuate its purposes and duties as set forth in this act and as enumerated in the bylaws of the council. The council shall adopt at the earliest possible opportunity a set of bylaws enumerating its purposes, duties, powers, and rules of organization and operation, which bylaws shall not be inconsistent with, or exceed the provisions of, this act.
(6) BONDS AUTHORIZED.–
(a) Upon resolution of the county commission approving such authority, each county arts council created pursuant to this act shall have the power to issue, refund, or take any other action with respect to revenue bonds to finance or refinance a capital project as part I of chapter 159 authorizes, insofar as the provisions of part I of chapter 159 are applicable. For the purposes of this act, the term “unit,” as defined in s. 159.02, shall be deemed to include any county fine arts council created pursuant to this act, and the term “governing body,” as defined in s. 159.02, shall be deemed to include any county fine arts council created pursuant to this act.
(b) Bonds issued under the provisions of this act shall not constitute a debt of the county or any municipality therein or a pledge of the faith and credit of the county or any municipality therein, and a statement to that effect shall be recited on the face of the bonds. However, any county or municipality therein may, by express resolution, assume as its debt, or pledge its faith and credit as a guarantee of, the bonds of the county arts council if such bonds are issued to finance or refinance a capital project authorized by law and are approved by a vote of the electors.
(7) COUNCIL MEETINGS; PUBLIC HEARINGS; COMMITTEES AND ADVISERS; REPORTS; RULES.–
(a) The council shall meet at least quarterly pursuant to notice and at such times and places as the council shall determine. One-half of the council membership, plus one, shall comprise a quorum for the transaction of business at council meetings.
(b) The council shall hold at least one public hearing annually, pursuant to public notice specifying the date and place of hearing and the subjects to be considered, for the purposes of making the council’s work known and investigating and assessing the needs and development of the arts in the county. Notwithstanding the publication of an agenda for the annual meeting, the specification of subjects shall not preclude consideration of any other subject pertinent to the above-stated purpose of the meeting if that other subject is raised by any county resident present at the meeting.
(c) The council may establish such working committees of council members as it deems appropriate to carry out its objectives, duties, and powers.
(d) The council may convene such advisory panels and may consult with such advisers and experts as it deems necessary and appropriate for carrying out its objectives, duties, and powers.
(e) The council shall formulate and publish rules setting forth the criteria pursuant to which its financial aid is given and such other rules regarding its activities as it deems appropriate.
(f) The county arts council may, from time to time and at any time, submit to the Florida Council on Arts and Culture a report summarizing its activities and setting forth any recommendations it considers appropriate, including recommendations with respect to present or proposed legislation concerning state encouragement and support of the arts.
(8) ACT FOR PUBLIC PURPOSE; EFFECT ON EXISTING COUNCILS.–
(a) This act, being for public purpose and for the welfare of the citizens of Florida, shall be liberally construed to effect the purposes hereof.
(b) Nothing in this act shall affect the operation or structure of any existing arts council that provides service to any community or county and is so recognized by members of said community or county. Nonetheless, any existing council may be reorganized by resolution of the board of county commissioners into a public agency corporate and politic as provided in subsection (1); however, the council shall conform to the provisions of subsection (2) except as to number of appointed members. In such case, any and all prior enabling legislation pursuant to which said council was established shall be repealed and superseded by this act insofar as it is inconsistent with this act. Council members serving at the time of passage of the hereinbefore mentioned resolution may serve for the remaining portions of their terms. In the event that some council members are elected to their positions, those positions shall continue to be filled by election as they had been previously.