(1) There is created a public broadcasting program system for the state. The department shall administer this program system pursuant to rules adopted by the State Board of Education. This program system must complement and share resources with the instructional programming service of the Department of Education and educational UHF, VHF, ITFS, and FM stations in the state. The program system must include:
(a) Support for existing Corporation for Public Broadcasting qualified program system educational radio and television stations and new stations meeting Corporation for Public Broadcasting qualifications and providing a first service to an audience that does not currently receive a broadcast signal or providing a significant new program service as defined by rule by the State Board of Education.
(b) Maintenance of quality broadcast capability for educational stations that are part of the program system.
(c) Interconnection of all educational stations that are part of the program system for simultaneous broadcast and of such stations with all universities and other institutions as necessary for sharing of resources and delivery of programming.
(d) Establishment and maintenance of a capability for statewide program distribution with facilities and staff, provided such facilities and staff complement and strengthen existing or future educational television and radio stations in accordance with paragraph (a) and s. 1001.25(2)(c).
(e) Provision of both statewide programming funds and station programming support for educational television and educational radio to meet statewide priorities. Priorities for station programming need not be the same as priorities for programming to be used statewide. Station programming may include, but shall not be limited to, citizens’ participation programs, music and fine arts programs, coverage of public hearings and governmental meetings, equal air time for political candidates, and other public interest programming.
(2)(a) The Department of Education is responsible for implementing the provisions of this section pursuant to s. 282.702 and may employ personnel, acquire equipment and facilities, and perform all duties necessary for carrying out the purposes and objectives of this section.
(b) The department shall provide through educational television and other electronic media a means of extending educational services to all the state system of public education. The department shall recommend to the State Board of Education rules necessary to provide such services.
(c) The department is authorized to provide equipment, funds, and other services to extend and update both the existing and the proposed educational television and radio systems of tax-supported and nonprofit, corporate-owned facilities. All stations funded must be qualified by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. New stations eligible for funding shall provide a first service to an audience that is not currently receiving a broadcast signal or provide a significant new program service as defined by State Board of Education rules. Funds appropriated to the department for educational television and funds appropriated to the department for educational radio may be used by the department for either educational television or educational radio, or for both.
(3) The State Board of Education shall adopt rules for the proper enforcement and carrying out of these provisions.