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Public Broadcasting Policy
Board of Governors Policy 3.1.060
Approved by the Board of Governors on May 9, 2003

I. Purpose

The primary purpose of the Office of Broadcasting Services at the University of Central Missouri is to provide quality, substantive programs which enrich, enlighten, educate, and inform audiences and provide other program services to the public and the university not generally available by other means.
The mission of public broadcasting is to bring to the public the highest accomplishments of our society and civilization in all of their rich diversity, to permit talent to fulfill the potential of the electronic media for educating and informing, and to provide opportunities for the audience of public broadcasting to benefit from a pattern of programming unavailable from other sources.

II. Policy

The Board of Governors understands the importance of public broadcasting's mission. As custodians of the university's fiscal reputation, a level of credibility necessary to acquire support from those whose taxes and donations make public broadcasting possible, the Board of Governors is also the final guardian of public broadcasting's editorial integrity and its reputation in the marketplace of ideas.

The Board of Governors believes that editorial integrity in public broadcasting programming means the responsible application by professional practitioners of a free and independent decision-making process which is ultimately accountable to the needs and interests of all citizens.

In order to assure that programs meet the standards of editorial integrity, principles will be adopted by the Office of Broadcasting Services to establish a basis for broadcasting policy and practice. These principles also form a basic standard by which the services of a public broadcasting license can be judged.

III. Standards

A. We are Trustees of a Public Service.

Public broadcasting was created to provide a wide range of programming services of the highest professionalism and quality which can educate, enlighten and entertain the public, its audience and source of support. It is a noncommercial enterprise, reflecting the worthy purpose of federal and state governments to provide education and cultural enrichment to their citizens.
As trustees of this public service, part of our job is to educate all citizens and public policymakers to our function and to assure that we can certify to all citizens that station management responsibly exercises the editorial freedom necessary to achieve public broadcasting's mission effectively.

B. Our Service is Programming.

The purpose of public broadcasting is to offer its audience educational and cultural programming which provides alternatives in quality, type and scheduling. As the governing board, we must create the climate, the policies and the sense of direction which assures that this mission of providing high-quality programming can be attained.

C. Credibility is the Currency of Our Programming.

As surely as quality programming is a primary purpose, and the product by which our audiences judge our value, that judgment will depend upon their confidence that our programming is free from undue or improper influence by special interest groups. Our role as the governing board includes educating both citizens and public policymakers to the importance of this fact and to assuring that our stations meet this challenge in a responsible and efficient way.

D. Many of Our Responsibilities are Grounded in Constitutional or Statutory Law.

Public broadcasting stations are subject to a variety of statutory and regulatory requirements and restrictions. These include the federal statute under which licensees must operate, as well as other applicable federal and state laws. Public broadcasting is also cloaked with the mantle of First Amendment protection of a free press and freedom of speech.

As trustees we must be sure that these responsibilities are met. To do so is to understand the legal and constitutional framework within which our stations operate, and to inform and educate those whose position or influence may affect the operation of our license.

E. We Have a Fiduciary Responsibility for Public Funds.

Public broadcasting depends upon funds provided by university allocations, individual and corporate contributions and by state and federal funds. Trustees must therefore assure the public and their chosen public officials alike that this money is well spent.

As trustees, we must assure conformance to sound fiscal and management practices. We must also assure that the legal requirements placed on us by funding sources are met.

Approved by the Board of Regents on May 20, 1987
Approved by the Board of Governors on May 9, 2003

Formatting updated August 1, 2007