(1) The Secretary of Management Services may create the Florida Advisory Council on Small and Minority Business Development with the purpose of advising and assisting the secretary in carrying out the secretary’s duties with respect to minority businesses and economic and business development. It is the intent of the Legislature that the membership of such council include practitioners, laypersons, financiers, and others with business development experience who can provide invaluable insight and expertise for this state in the diversification of its markets and networking of business opportunities. The council shall initially consist of 19 persons, each of whom is or has been actively engaged in small and minority business development, either in private industry, in governmental service, or as a scholar of recognized achievement in the study of such matters. Initially, the council shall consist of members representing all regions of the state and shall include at least one member from each group identified within the definition of “minority person” in s. 288.703(4), considering also gender and nationality subgroups, and shall consist of the following:
(a) Four members consisting of representatives of local and federal small and minority business assistance programs or community development programs.
(b) Eight members composed of representatives of the minority private business sector, including certified minority business enterprises and minority supplier development councils, among whom at least two shall be women and at least four shall be minority persons.
(c) Two representatives of local government, one of whom shall be a representative of a large local government, and one of whom shall be a representative of a small local government.
(d) Two representatives from the banking and insurance industry.
(e) Two members from the private business sector, representing the construction and commodities industries.
(f) A member from the board of directors of Enterprise Florida, Inc.
A candidate for appointment may be considered if eligible to be certified as an owner of a minority business enterprise, or if otherwise qualified under the criteria above. Vacancies may be filled by appointment of the secretary, in the manner of the original appointment.
(2) Each appointed member shall serve for a term of 2 years from the date of appointment, except that a vacancy shall be filled by appointment for the remainder of the unexpired term. The council shall annually elect a chair and a vice chair. The council shall adopt internal procedures or bylaws necessary for efficient operations. Members of the council shall serve without compensation or honorarium but shall be entitled to per diem and travel expenses pursuant to s. 112.061 for the performance of duties for the council. The executive administrator of the commission may remove a council member for cause.
(3) Within 30 days after its initial meeting, the council shall elect from among its members a chair and a vice chair.
(4) The council shall meet at the call of its chair, at the request of a majority of its membership, at the request of the commission or its executive administrator, or at such times as may be prescribed by rule, but not less than once a year, to offer its views on issues related to small and minority business development of concern to this state. A majority of the members of the council shall constitute a quorum.
(5) The powers and duties of the council include, but are not limited to: researching and reviewing the role of small and minority businesses in the state’s economy; reviewing issues and emerging topics relating to small and minority business economic development; studying the ability of financial markets and institutions to meet small business credit needs and determining the impact of government demands on credit for small businesses; assessing the implementation of s. 187.201(21), requiring a state economic development comprehensive plan, as it relates to small and minority businesses; assessing the reasonableness and effectiveness of efforts by any state agency or by all state agencies collectively to assist minority business enterprises; and advising the Governor, the secretary, and the Legislature on matters relating to small and minority business development which are of importance to the international strategic planning and activities of this state.
(6) On or before January 1 of each year, the council shall present an annual report to the secretary that sets forth in appropriate detail the business transacted by the council during the year and any recommendations to the secretary, including those to improve business opportunities for small and minority business enterprises.