Bulgarian National Radio and

Bulgarian National Television

Act

 

Status and Object of the Bulgarian National Radio and Bulgarian National Television

Object and Legislative Status

Article 1. (1) The Bulgarian National Radio and Bulgarian National Television (referred to hereinafter as the BNR and the BNT) shall be organizations of national significance and in the interest of the public, offering services in the sphere of radio and television

(2) The registered office of the BNR and the BNT shall be the city of Sofia.

(3) The BNR and the BNT shall be legal entities corporate under public law. The BNR and the BNT property shall be public - and state - owned.

Object of the BNR and the BNT

Article 2. The public services offered by the BNR and the BNT under the this Act shall be creating, producing and broadcasting radio and television programs by ground, cable, satellite, and other technical methods, and offering teletext and other new radio and television services.

II. Programs National Programs

Article 3. (1) The BNT shall create, produce and broadcast one national television programs and regional TV programs.

(2) The BNR shall produce and broadcast one national radio program, and one radio program for foreigners, including the Bulgarians abroad, and regional radio programs.

(3) The BNR and the BNT national programs shall be broadcast in the official language of the Republic of Bulgaria.

Regional Programs

Article 4. (1) Regional programs shall be programs made at the regional television centers of Blagoevgrad, Plovdiv, Varna, Rousse, and the regional local radio stations of Blagoevgrad Varna, Plovdiv, Stara Zagora and Shoumen intended particularly for the population of the respective regions and having their own individual character conformable to the specificity of the region. (2) i he regional broadcasts shall be devised and made by the regions. centers and snail be subject to approval by the BNR and BNT Program

Article 2. The public services offered by the BNR and the BNT under the this Act shall be creating, producing and broadcasting radio and television programs by ground, cable, satellite, and other technical methods, and offering teletext and other new radio and television services.

II. Programs National Programs

Article 3. (1) The BNT shall create, produce and broadcast one national television programs and regional TV programs.

(2) The BNR shall produce and broadcast one national radio program, and one radio program for foreigners, including the Bulgarians abroad, and regional radio programs.

(3) The BNR and the BNT national programs shall be broadcast in the official language of the Republic of Bulgaria.

Regional Programs

Article 4. (1) Regional programs shall be programs made at the regional television centers of Blagoevgrad, Plovdiv, Varna, Rousse, and the regional local radio stations of Blagoevgrad Varna, Plovdiv, Stara Zagora and Shoumen intended particularly for the population of the respective regions and having their own individual character conformable to the specificity of the region. (2) i he regional broadcasts shall be devised and made by the regions. centers and snail be subject to approval by the BNR and BNT Program

Committee (referred to hereafter as the Public Program Committee (PPC).

(3) The regional radio and television centers shall participate with their own programs in the creation and production of national radio and television broadcasts. The quotas of the regional centers within the national radio and television programs shall be determined by the Public Program Committee while taking into consideration the capacities of the regional center and the specificity of the region.

(4) The regional radio and television centers shall be subordinate in administrative terms to the BNR and the BNT, and in terms of programs - subordinate to the Public Program Committee. The directors of the regional radio and television centers shall be appointed by the BNR and the BNT Directors General respectively.

(5) The BNR and the BNT directors general must take measures to ensure the staff and technological provision of the regional radio and television centers in such a manner as to guarantee the implementation of the tasks set.

Public Responsibility of the BNR and the BNT

Article 5. (1) The BNR and the BNT shall take into consideration in their program activities the interest of the whole community. (2) The BNR and the BNT shall carry out their activities as per the freedom of mass media that the Constitution guarantees and the principle of equality for all public and political forces and groups in the country.

(3) The BNR and the BNT journalists cannot take instructions and directions from people who are not in the managing bodies of the two organizations stated by this Act as per how to execute their activities.

Program objectives

Article 6. (1) The BNR and the BNT shall present in their programs an extensive review of the developments in all major spheres of life in the country and abroad. Their programs shall serve the purposes of enlightenment, education, cultural development and entertainment of the population. Basic program objective shall be to assist the formation of free personal and public opinion.

(2) The national programs shall contain comprehensive information about current events in the different regions of the country.

(3) The BNR and the BNT programs shall account for the interests and demands of all social groups.

(4) The BNR and BNT programs must consist of at least 30 % of Bulgarian national cultural production.

Program Principles

Article 7. (1) The BNR and the BNT must protect in their broadcasts the constitutionally established order. They shall serve the interests and purposes of the whole society.

(2) The BNR and the BNT broadcasts shall promote public moral.

(3) The BNR and the BNT shall reflect in their programs the variety of views and opinions, and of political, scientific and religious outlooks of the people. They shall respect human dignity and protect human rights.

(4) The BNR and the BNT shall be guided in their program acivities by the requirement of objectivity and lack of partiality. If any arguable matters of public interest should arise, then a balanced presentation of

various viewpoints shall be given. The broadcasts cannot serve unilaterally the interests of any party or public force or economic interest.

(5) The informational programs shall be comprehensive, plausible and efficient The news shall be verified as to their truthfulness and origin before being broadcast. The editors shall be responsible for the supra-party nature and lack of partiality in the news selection. Commentaries shall be distinct from the news and presented as a personal opinion with the name of the author explicitly mentioned.

Article 8. The regional radio and television broadcasts shall reflect events particularly of local significance, local political and cultural events, and shall inform the public about the economic development of the region.

Program Realization

Article 9. (1) The BNR and the BNT shall create and make their programs with their own efforts and resources. This shall be particularly valid for the news and publicistic programs

(2) Within the framework of the program tasks, the BNR and the BNT can assign the production of certain programs to third persons. The Public Program Committee shall judge as to what kind of programs can be made by third persons. The BNR and the BNT may sign contracts with other radio and television companies and institutions working in the field of audio-visual media for provision or exchange of programs.

The BNR and the BNT cannot hold shares in private radio or television organizations.

 

Inadmissible Broadcasts

Article 10. (1) The BNR and the BNT shall not tolerate in their programs the instigation of political, religious or ethnical hatred and intolerance in the society.

(2) The programs cannot extol or justify cruelty or violence, nor can they carry out war propaganda.

(3) The programs of the BNR and the BNT cannot feature elements of pornographic content.

(4) Inadmissible shall be considered programs which can harm the mental health of children and young people. Films and other programs which are not recommendable for minors and people under age can be broadcast only within the time between 12.00 p.m. and 6.00 a.m.

Commercial Presentation

Article 11. (1) Commercials shall be separated from the rest of the program and labeled as such. Commercials cannot influence the rest of the program. Commercials designed for children and young people cannot manipulate their innocence.

(2) Commercials shall be broadcast in blocks. Programs with duration of over 45 minutes can be interrupted by commercial blocks once every 45 minutes. Commercials coming out during sports shows shall be displayed in the natural breaks.

(3) Programs aided by third persons (sponsors) cannot contain commercials of the sponsor, but can mention him. The sponsor cannot influence the contents of the sponsored program. Full sponsorship of the BNR or the BNT programs shall not be allowed.

Commercial Duration

Article 12. (1) The BNR and the BNT shall advertise commercials out of the time between 8.00 p.m. and 11.00 p.m.

(2) The time devoted to advertising within programs cannot exceed 10 (ten) per cent of the total duration of the program for a twenty-four-hour period.

(3) The BNR and the BNT shall work out internal advertising rules. These rules shall be applicable to regional programs , too.

(4) The Public Program Committee shall monitor the correct application of the above mentioned rules concerning the advertising activities on part of the BNR and the BNT.

Access to Broadcasting Time by Third Persons

Article 13. (1) The BNR and BNT must provide broadcasting time immediately and free of charge to governmental and state and public body representatives to make official announcements in case of calamities or other close to the health and security of the population dangers.

(2) The BNR and the BNT must provide the required broadcasting time immediately and free of charge to the President of the Republic.

 

(3) Parties and other political organizations shall be entitled to broadcasting time during general and presidential elections canvassing.

The order and conditions for conducting the election campaigns through the BNR and the BNT are set forth in the Election Act.

(4) At requisition by the Bulgarian Orthodox Church, the BNR and the BNT shall provide broadcasting time for important religious ceremonies. Other officially registered denominations can request for allotment of broadcasting time to address believers on the occasion of religious holidays of theirs.

(5) The responsibility as per the form and contents of the programs under the present Article shall be one of the bodies or organizations that have been granted the broadcasting time.

Rebuttal and Correction

Article 14. (1) The BNR and the BNT must broadcast rebuttals or corrections requested by individuals or bodies affected directly by the false or wrong facts about them or their activities presented in the program.

(2) The obligation to broadcast a rebuttal or correction shall not occur when:

1. the rebuttal or correction exceeds considerably in volume the contested part of the broadcast;

2. the rebuttal or correction constitutes offenses under law.

(3) The rebuttal or correction should be requested in writing and signed by the person affected or his/her legal representative. The request must state the contested facts, the time and date of the broadcast.

(4) The rebuttal or the correction shall be presented at the same temporal interval that the contested program was broadcast, without any curtailments or amendments. The broadcast of rebuttals or corrections shall be free of charge.

(5) The BNR and the BNT may refuse to show a rebuttal or correction in written and motivated form. The refusal may be appealed in Court.

(6) The above stated provisions shall not be applicable if accurate messages about public meetings of state or public bodies and courts have been announced. Record and Sound Track Keeping Obligations

Article 15. (1) The BNR and the BNT must record and keep all programs that have been broadcast for a period no lesser than three months.

(3) A person who makes an equitable claim on his/her being affected by a particular broadcast shall be in the position to have access to the BNR and the BNT library and may request to be made copies of the broadcasts at his/her account. The BNR and the BNT must report, if requested, the names and addresses of the individuals responsible for the contested programs.

(4) The provisions of this Article shall not revoke of the liability of the BNR and the BNT to collect and keep audio- and video records.

III. Management and Supervision Bodies

Article 16. (1) Bodies of the BNR and the BNT shall be: ' The Public Program Committee 2. The Directors Genera!

(2) A body or a member of a body can be any person who is a Bulgarian citizen, and who lives on the territory of the country, and has

not been convicted and has not been denied the right to hold public posts.

(3) The Public Program Committee members shall be guided by the interests of the public and shall be its representatives as per the national electronic media program policy. They cannot take or fulfill tasks of political and economical character that are related to their public function.

(4) The BNR and the BNT director generals cannot be Public Program Committee members. The same shall apply to officers or regular contributors to the BNR or the BNT.

(5) Members of the Public Program Committee cannot be engaged in performing activities against payment within the framework of the BNR, and the BNT, and other radio and television organizations or consortiums of such organizations.

(7) Members of the Public Program Committee cannot sign contracts with the BNR or the BNT in the capacity of owners, partners, members of boards of directors, officers or representatives of economic partnerships on their own or other person's behalf and at their own or other person's account. In case this stipulation is breached, their membership in the Committee shall be automatically terminated.

The Public Program Committee Format

Article 17. (1) The Public Program Committee shall consist of fifteen members elected by the Parliament on proposals made by parliamentary groups or individual members of Parliament. The Parliament shall vote for each of the nominated candidates. A Public Program Committee member shall be elected by a majority of two/thirds of the Members of Parliament present.

(2) When selecting the Public Program Committee members, renowned figures of reputation that are representatives of science, culture and the arts enjoying strong public trust shall be tolerated.

(3) When electing the Public Program Committee, the principle of regional representation shall be complied with, and each of the country regions shall have its representative.

(4) The Public Program Committee shall elect its Chairman from amongst its members at its first meeting. The Chairman shall be elected by a simple majority of the votes of all committee members.

Term of Office, Representation and Funding of the Public Program Committee

Article 18. (1) The Public Program Committee members shall be elected for a period of four years. (2) The Public Program Committee members may be replaced only:

1. in the event of death;

2. at their request.

(4) In this case the National Assembly shall elect a new member as a replacement of the old one under the provisions set forth in Article 17.

(5) The Public Program Committee shall be financed proportionally by the budgets of the BNR and the BNT. The Public Program Committee members shall be entitled to receive funds required for the execution of their function.

The BNR and BNT Public Program Committee Tasks

Article 19. (1) The Public Program Committee shall represent the public interest as regards the BNR and the BNT programs, and take into account the diversity of public opinion.

(2) The Public Program Committee shall formulate the BNR and the BNT programming policy. More specifically, it shall determine the program priorities and monitor the balance between the informational, educational, cultural and entertainment elements in them.

(3) The Public Program Committee shall pass its judgment on the BNR and the BNT annual program plans. Its leads on issues concerning the program shall be deemed obligatory for the BNR and the BNT.

(4) The Public Program Committee shall supervise the program principles this Act formulates (Art. 8 to 12) and shall advise the Directors General of the BNR and the BNT on program-related issues. In cases where violation of the programming principles are found, the Committee shall inform in writing the Directors General of the BNR and the BNT and shall oblige them to put an end on the violation, if it is continuous, or prevent its occurrence in the future.

(5) The term of reference of the Public Program Committee given under the three preceding paragraphs shall extend over the regional radio and television centers, too. In this case, the advice and leads under Par. 4 shall concern the directors of the regional centers and shall be binding for them. (6) The Public Program Committee shall perform the following tasks:

1. take decisions concerning the BNR and the BNT program policy principles.

2. adopt by decisions the annual BNR and the BNT program plans presented by the directors general.

3. adopt the status and approve the structure of the two institutions proposed by the Directors General, so far as they are involved in the program.

4. take decisions on reference to the competent state institutions in the cases stipulated by this Act.

5. act as a specialized expert body in the meaning of Art. 6, Par. 3 of the Regulations on the Enforcement of the Concession Act in line with Art. 6, Par. 3 of the Concession Act, by expressing judgment regarding the programs, with reference to giving objects on concession under Art. 4, Par. 1, Section 4 of the Concession Act. (7) In the implementation of its tasks, the Committee shall have the power to access documents of the BNR and the BNT directly concerning the program.

The Public Program Committee Meetings

Article 20. (1) The Public Program Committee shall be convened to a meeting by its Chairman at least once every three months. It shall be deemed obligatory that the BNR and the BNT directors general and the directors of the regional radio and television centers are invited to the Committee meetings. The secretaries general of the BNR and the BNT shall be in charge of the organizational and technical security of the BNR and BNT work. Meetings devoted to discussion on the BNR, the BNT and the regional centers annual program plans must be convened during the first month of the calendar year. (2) The Public Program Committee may invite to its meetings experts involved with the BNR, the BNT or the regional centers to present their opinion on matters within their competence.

(3) The meetings of the Public Program Committee shall be public. Minutes shall betaken at them.

(5) The Public Program Committee may decide to hold individual meetings concerning the activities of the BNR only or the BNT only, as well as joint meetings with representatives of both of the institutions.

Decisions of the BNR and BNT Public Program Committee

Article 21. (1) The Public Program Committee may take decisions when all of its members have been invited through the respective procedure and when at least two/thirds of them are present at the meeting.

(2) The Public Program Committee may take decisions on issues with no reference to the quorum under the preceding paragraph if in a due course after the non-quorum meeting a new one is convened.

(3) The Directors General of the BNR and the BNT and the directors of the regional centers shall be entitled to deliberative votes. Their failure to attend a meeting shall not reflect on the legal value of the Committee's decisions.

(4) The decisions of the Public Program Committee shall be taken by a simple majority of the votes of those present.

Directors General of the BNR and the BNT

Article 22. (1) The Directors General of the BNR and the BNT shall be the administrative managers of the institutions entrusted with them and shall bear responsibility for their overall activities, financing, material base, equipment, and the program contents. They shall supervise the compliance of the programs with the provisions of law and the requirements of the Public Program Committee.

(2) In performance of their duties the Directors General shall enjoy the right to take independent decisions concerning all aspects of the activities of the institutions they are in charge of, except the decisions requiring the approval of other bodies under this Act.

(3) The tasks and the rights of the Directors General and the officers of the BNR and BNT and the legal relations between them shall be defined by the status of the two institutions. The Directors General shall appoint their deputies to take over their duties when away.

(4) The BNR and the BNT shall be represented by their Directors General. They may authorize certain officers to represent the institutions within their competence. They shall authorize them in writing.

(5) The Directors General shall submit to the Council of Ministers and the Parliament the budget subsidy projects and financial statements of the respective institution.

(6) The Directors General shall be paid a monthly fee to the rate of three average salaries.

Election and Removal of the Directors General

Article 23. (1) The Directors General of the BNR and the BNT shall be elected by the Parliament on proposal by the Council of Ministers for a term of four years. The election of general directors of the BNR and the BNT shall require a majority of all Members of Parliament. The Council of Ministers shall be entitled to only two successive nominees for Directors General.

(2) In case the Parliament does not approve of the candidates proposed and rejects the second nominees, too, the Parliament may propose

candidates for the BNR and the BNT directors general on the initiative of Parliamentary groups or individual Members of Parliament.

(3) Ground for removal of the Directors General may be the breach of the stipulations of this Act or non-conformity to the Public Program Committee's decisions. Early Parliamentary elections or a new Government shall not be considered ground for removal of the Directors General.

(4) The Directors General of the BNR and BNT shall be removed by the Parliament, and at their request.

Interrelations Between the BNR, the BNT and the State -

Article 24. (1) The Council of Ministers cannot govern the BNR and BNT program policy, and issue regulations pertaining to the administrative or financial management of the two institutions concerning directly or indirectly the implementation of the program as formulated by the Public Program Committee.

(2) The regulations of the Government related to the administrative and financial management of the state institutions and departments shall be compulsory for the two BNR and BNT institutions.

(3) In cases of disputes under the preceding paragraph, the problem shall be brought to the Supreme Court on the initiative of the Public Program Committee.

(4) The Council of Ministers shall be entitled to give its permission on: acquisition and manipulation of immovable property, setting up subsidiaries of the BNR and the BNT, acquisition of companies or stakes in them; extension of credits: taking over debts exceeding the amount equal to the monetary value of five percents of the assets of the

BNR and BNT unless in the case of contracts for producing or buying programs.

(5) The Council of Ministers shall oblige the Department of posts and telecommunications to ensure technical conditions for the entire territorial BNR and BNT broadcast coverage of the country. The broadcasting scope of the regional programs shall be determined by the Council of Ministers on proposal made by the Public Program Committee. The Department of posts and telecommunications shall provide conditions, where possible, for the transboundary transmission of the BNR and BNT broadcasts in border areas of neighboring countries with Bulgarian population.

(6) The expenditure for the development of the technical infrastructure for the BNR and the BNT program transmission, as well as for the transmission itself shall be undertaken by the state.

IV. Financing and Financial Control Financing of the BNR and BNT

Article 25. (1) The activities of the BNR and the BNT shall be financed entirely by: a) proceeds from license fees, stipulated in a law, imposed on radio

and TV set owners; b) budget subsidies; c) advertising and sponsorship; d) own economical activities.

Proceeds from Advertising and Sponsorship

Article 27. The funds received through advertising and sponsorship shall come as a profit to the BNR or the BNT respectively. No less than fifty per cent of these funds shall be allotted to the production of new audio- and visual works.

Own Economic Activities

Article 28. (1) The BNR and the BNT may establish subsidiaries, acquire companies or stakes in such companies only and inasmuch as these subsidiaries and companies shall directly be associated with the implementation of their program tasks.

(2) In case of acquiring stakes in other companies, the BNR and BNT must ensure determinant membership in their managing bodies.

(3) The directors general, the BNR and the BNT officers, and the Public Program Committee members cannot be involved directly or indirectly in the management or ownership of companies where the BNR and 'the BNT hold shares.

(4) The BNR and the BNT shall take measures to prevent participation of managers or officers of companies where the BNR and BNT are shareholders, in other companies with similar objects.

Financial Control

Article 29. (1) The financial control over the BNR and the BNT activities shall be exercised by the duly authorized for this bodies and by the Auditing Office.

(2) The results of the financial audits shall be reported to the Government, to the Public Program Committee and the respective Director General. Each of the individuals and institutions under this

Paragraph may inform the Parliament about the auditing results their own initiative.

(3) The BNR and the BNT shall publish their annual financial statement every year.

(4) The Directors General of the BNR and the BNT shall be held liable for the legal, expedient and efficient spending of the finances of the two organizations.

(5) The BNR and the BNT shall be exempt from legal and state fees.

V. Administrative and Penalty Clause The Program Content Responsibility

Article 29. A person of responsibility from the BNR and the BNT who breaches the provisions of this Act concerning the program shall be sanctioned with a fine equal to a gross monthly salary, unless a heavier penalty is not required. The breach shall be ascertained by the Public Program Committee, and the penalty shall be imposed by the Director General.

VI. Transitional and Concluding Provisions The Public Program Committee Constituting

1(1) Within a month from the adoption of the Act, the Parliament shall elect the members of the Public Program Committee.

(2) The Public Program Committee Chairman shall convene its members to the constituent assembly not later than a fortnight following the appointment of its membership.

(3) The Public Program Committee shall adopt interior regulations on its activities within a month following its constituent assembly.

(4) Within two months of its constituent assembly the Public Program Committee shall write and adopt a document formulating the BNR and the BNT program standards and their implementation, and shall bring them to the attention of the general public.

(5) Programs not complying with the program standards must be canceled within a term of six months following the program standards publication. In this case, the BNR and BNT shall not pay indemnity to the creditors for the terminated contracts.

Adoption of the BNR and the BNT Status and Structure

2. (1) Within two months following the adoption of the program standards, the Public Program Committee shall adopt the status and structure of the BNR and BNT.

(2) The status shall conform to the formulated program standards and shall regulate: the internal organization of the two institutions; the major departments and their functions; the leading posts, the manner in which people shall be appointed to these posts, their rights and liability, and their relationship with the Directors General, and the methods of performing the duties and control over the program, and other important issues related to the organization and functioning of the institutions.

Broadcasting of Existing Programs

3. The BNR and the BNT shall continue to broadcast existing second channel programs until other administrative action regarding the frequencies on which they are broadcast in the meaning of the Act on Concessions and the Regulations on its enforcement shall not be taken.

4. This Act shall come into force three months after its publication in the Dwrjaven vestnic official gazette.

Motivation to the Bulgarian National Radio and the Bulgarian National Television Bill

The proposed Bill of the Bulgarian National Radio and Bulgarian National Television Act aims at filling a serious gap in the legislative framework related to the mass media activities and meeting the pressing public demand for providing legislative basis for the two institutions' work, for defining their objectives in clear-cut terms, and the liability and control over their activities.

The fact that the Bill is restricted only to the activities of the national media is justified by legislative logic and practice. The national electronic media fall into the regulatory environment of public law, whereas the private radio and television stations are per definitio subjects to private law and as such they come under the legislative regulations of another statuary sphere.

The Bill touches upon an extremely sensitive matter insofar as the regulation on the activities of the national electronic media provides, on the one hand. It is a guarantee for the citizens to exercise their constitutional right of freedom of speech (Art, 39 of the Constitution), on the other hand, it must secure' the material freedom of the mass media (Art. 40 of the Constitution), and thirdly, to reconcile the contradiction between these two major principles and the established and objectively set form of funding of the BNR and the BNT and their objective status -public and state - owned property , as well as the circumstance that the cable network system is in the competent sphere of a Department -which is a division of the executive power.

The major problem arising from this Bill is predetermined by the fact that the transformation of the state medium into a public one presupposes launching of alternative funding sources for the BNR and the BNT, other than the state budget. The public television is based on two pillars - an independent public body of control, which supervises the activities of the national electronic media, and public financing of their activities in terms of fees collection from radio and TV set owners. In order to guarantee the public funding of the BNR and the BNT, and therefore their public status, there should be introduced license fees for the radio and TV set owners. The Bill envisages introduction of such fees as to be tolerable for the Bulgarian citizens. The fee rate shall be set out by law.

With reference to the efficiency of this system, a transition period shall be projected during the period of which the public funding system will be supported by state subsidies until the mechanism of fee collection becomes stable and developed. The purpose is leveled at a gradual transition of the state television into a public one, avoiding a possible financial collapse.

On the other hand, the major activities of the BNR and the BNT find expression in creation, production and broadcasting of radio and television programs. This activity is of public interest and constitutional significance, and cannot therefore be controlled by the state. In other words, the state, retaining certain powers over the BNR in administrative and financial terms, should abstain from any interference in the program policy of the two media.

The Bill so proposed makes this by strictly distinguishing between the two elements - „program" and „organization" of the BNR and the BNT. Having this purpose in mind, two major media institutions are

proposed to be launched - that of the Public Radio and Television Program Committee and Directors General.

The Public Program Committee shall be a body in charge of formulating the program policy and setting the program priorities of the BNR and the BNT. It envisages broad membership of administrative district representative thus aiming at a wider representation of the country interests in the programs . It is recommendable to elect Committee members that are renowned intellectuals and representatives of the creative and artistic intellectual circle which will add to the body authority and will reduce the possibility of external influence on its work. The qualified majority required for the Committee member election, and putting to vote each individual candidate serve as an extra quality selection guarantee.

The BNR and the BNT Directors General are the administrative managers of the two institutions. They are entirely responsible for their activities (program ones included) and are entitled to broad powers. The Directors General are suggested to be elected by the Parliament on proposal made by the Council of Ministers.

Extensive consideration within the Bill is given to the program principles which should be pluralistic, balanced and meeting the interests of the public that is of a democratic and civilized character. Taken into consideration are the requirements of the European Convention on Transboundery Television and the other instruments in this area. It has been for the first time that principles of the regional programs transmitted by the respective regional radio and TV centers have been defined by a normative deed. The increase of the influence on their behalf and the liability to participate in the national programs in percentage terms will contribute to the seif-esteem, commitment and

responsibility of the regions and will act as an impetus to the local development.

The idea that the BNR and the BNT are state institutions of national significance is also logically brought about by the requirement to the state to provide the required resources for the technical transmission. A legal requirement shall be introduced to the Department of telecommunications to provide conditions for national program coverage in the boundary areas with Bulgarian ethnic communities. At least 30 % of the BNR and the BNT programs shall be projected for Bulgarian national cultural production.

It is our belief that the Bill so proposed can guarantee a longstanding and constitutionally secured development of relationship in this sphere.