(1) The Office of Tourism, Trade, and Economic Development may authorize a direct-support organization to assist the office in:
(a) The promotion and development of the sports industry and related industries for the purpose of improving the economic presence of these industries in Florida.
(b) The promotion of amateur athletic participation for the citizens of Florida and the promotion of Florida as a host for national and international amateur athletic competitions for the purpose of encouraging and increasing the direct and ancillary economic benefits of amateur athletic events and competitions.
(c) The retention of professional sports franchises, including the spring training operations of Major League Baseball.
(2) To be authorized as a direct-support organization, an organization must:
(a) Be incorporated as a corporation not for profit pursuant to chapter 617.
(b) Be governed by a board of directors, which must consist of up to 15 members appointed by the Governor and up to 15 members appointed by the existing board of directors. In making appointments, the board must consider a potential member’s background in community service and sports activism in, and financial support of, the sports industry, professional sports, or organized amateur athletics. Members must be residents of the state and highly knowledgeable about or active in professional or organized amateur sports. The board must contain representatives of all geographical regions of the state and must represent ethnic and gender diversity. The terms of office of the members shall be 4 years. No member may serve more than two consecutive terms. The Governor may remove any member for cause and shall fill all vacancies that occur.
(c) Have as its purpose, as stated in its articles of incorporation, to receive, hold, invest, and administer property; to raise funds and receive gifts; and to promote and develop the sports industry and related industries for the purpose of increasing the economic presence of these industries in Florida.
(d) Have a prior determination by the Office of Tourism, Trade, and Economic Development that the organization will benefit the office and act in the best interests of the state as a direct-support organization to the office.
(3) The Office of Tourism, Trade, and Economic Development shall contract with the organization and shall include in the contract that:
(a) The office may review the organization’s articles of incorporation.
(b) The organization shall submit an annual budget proposal to the office, on a form provided by the office, in accordance with office procedures for filing budget proposals based upon the recommendation of the office.
(c) Any funds that the organization holds in trust will revert to the state upon the expiration or cancellation of the contract.
(d) The organization is subject to an annual financial and performance review by the office to determine whether the organization is complying with the terms of the contract and whether it is acting in a manner consistent with the goals of the office and in the best interests of the state.
(e) The fiscal year of the organization will begin July 1 of each year and end June 30 of the next ensuing year.
(4) The Office of Tourism, Trade, and Economic Development may allow the organization to use the property, facilities, personnel, and services of the office if the organization provides equal employment opportunities to all persons regardless of race, color, religion, sex, age, or national origin, subject to the approval of the director of the office.
(5) The organization shall provide for an annual financial audit in accordance with s. 215.981.
(6) The organization is not granted any taxing power.
(7) In exercising the power provided in this section, the Office of Tourism, Trade, and Economic Development may authorize and contract with the direct-support organization existing on June 30, 1996, and authorized by the former Florida Department of Commerce to promote sports-related industries. An appointed member of the board of directors of such direct-support organization as of June 30, 1996, may serve the remainder of his or her unexpired term.
(8) To promote amateur sports and physical fitness, the direct-support organization shall:
(a) Develop, foster, and coordinate services and programs for amateur sports for the people of Florida.
(b) Sponsor amateur sports workshops, clinics, conferences, and other similar activities.
(c) Give recognition to outstanding developments and achievements in, and contributions to, amateur sports.
(d) Encourage, support, and assist local governments and communities in the development of or hosting of local amateur athletic events and competitions.
(e) Promote Florida as a host for national and international amateur athletic competitions.
(f) Develop a statewide program of amateur athletic competition to be known as the “Sunshine State Games.”
(g) Continue the successful amateur sports programs previously conducted by the Florida Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Amateur Sports created under former s. 14.22.
(h) Encourage and continue the use of volunteers in its amateur sports programs to the maximum extent possible.
(i) Develop, foster, and coordinate services and programs designed to encourage the participation of Florida’s youth in Olympic sports activities and competitions.
(j) Foster and coordinate services and programs designed to contribute to the physical fitness of the citizens of Florida.
(9)(a) The Sunshine State Games shall be patterned after the Summer Olympics with variations as necessitated by availability of facilities, equipment, and expertise. The games shall be designed to encourage the participation of athletes representing a broad range of age groups, skill levels, and Florida communities. Participants shall be residents of this state. Regional competitions shall be held throughout the state, and the top qualifiers in each sport shall proceed to the final competitions to be held at a site in the state with the necessary facilities and equipment for conducting the competitions.
(b) The Executive Office of the Governor is authorized to permit the use of property, facilities, and personal services of or at any State University System facility or institution by the direct-support organization operating the Sunshine State Games. For the purposes of this paragraph, personal services includes full-time or part-time personnel as well as payroll processing.