CHAPTER 332

RELATING TO CITY OF WILMINGTON BOARD OF HEALTH

AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 207 OF VOLUME 17, LAWS OF DELAWARE, ENTITLED "AN ACT TO REVISE AND CONSOLIDATE THE STATUTES RELATING TO THE CITY OF WILMINGTON", AS AMENDED, WITH RELATION TO THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH (FORMERLY BOARD OF HEALTH), BY RECONSTITUTING SAID DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH, DEFINING ITS POWERS, AUTHORITY AND JURISDICTION, CONFERRING UPON IT SOLE AND EXCLUSIVE POWER TO ENACT ORDINANCES AND REGULATIONS RELATING TO PUBLIC HEALTH AND SANITATION, SETTING FORTH THE TERMS AND QUALIFICATIONS OF ITS MEMBERS, PROVIDING FOR A HEALTH COMMISSIONER, AND DEFINING HIS QUALIFICATIONS, DUTIES AND POWERS.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware (two-thirds of all the Members elected to each Branch thereof concurring therein):

Section 1. Section 137 of Chapter 207, Volume 17, Laws of Delaware, as amended by Chapter 557, Volume 20, Laws of Delaware, is further amended by striking out said section and by inserting in lieu thereof the following sections, to be styled Sections 137, 137A, 137B, 137C, 137D.

Section 137. The Department of Health is hereby vested with the sole and exclusive power, authority, jurisdiction and control over, and shall be responsible for, public health and sanitation within the City of Wilmington and within an area extending one mile beyond the corporate limits of said city, including all power, authority and jurisdiction heretofore conferred upon or vested in The Council of the Mayor and Council of Wilmington with relation to public health and sanitation. In addition to the foregoing jurisdiction, the Department of Health is hereby vested with the sole and exclusive power, authority, jurisdiction and control with respect to the following subjects:

(a) To preserve the health of the City, and to prevent the introduction of infectious or contagious diseases, for which purpose jurisdiction shall extend to any distance within one mile of the limits of the City;

(b) To define and remove nuisances, to the extent that any such nuisance affects or will affect public health or sanitation; and

(c) To provide against the adulteration of milk and cream sold or brought to be sold in the said City, and to provide for the proper inspection of the same.

The words "public health and sanitation" as used in this section and elsewhere in this Act shall include, but shall not be limited to, the following:

(1) The prevention and control of the spread of all diseases dangerous to public health.

(2) The prevention and control of all nuisances detrimental to public health.

(3) The recommendation of measures for the sanitary protection of all water supplies which are furnished to and used by the public.

(4) The sanitary control of public swimming and bathing places.

(5) The control and regulation of plumbing and plumbing facilities in the interest of health and sanitation.

(6) The regulation and control of fumigation and the use of insecticides.

(7) The sanitary regulation, inspection and control of the production, distribution and sale of milk, dairy products, meats and all other food and beverage products sold or offered for sale and/or public consumption.

(8) The sanitary regulation, inspection and control of public eating places, tourist camps, trailer camps, other public camps, and the sanitary facilities of all public places including service stations.

(9) The regulation, inspection and control of sanitary conditions and facilities in all homes, factories, shops, stores and public buildings, including supervision and control of sanitation, ventilation, and hygiene in all schools, and the adoption, promulgation and enforcement of reasonable standards of health and sanitation designed to prevent, ameliorate and remove working and living conditions inimical to public health and to prevent the development of and to eliminate slum areas within the City of Wilmington.

(0) The sanitary regulation and control of the disposal of dead bodies.

(1) The regulation and control of vaccination and inoculation against contagious and infectious diseases, and the compulsory periodic report and treatment of persons suffering with venereal diseases.

(2) The maintenance and control of adequate public records of births, deaths and marriages and the maintenance of a Bureau of Vital Statistics.

The Department of Health shall possess all power and authority reasonably incident to the foregoing enumerated powers, with full and exclusive power to enact, adopt and promulgate rules and regulations with relation thereto. In addition thereto, the Department of Health may require reports and information from all dispensaries, hospitals, nursing homes, infirmaries, prisons, schools, and other institutions, and from all physicians, midwives, undertakers, and others, relative to sanitary conditions and the health and safety of all patients, inmates, nurses and attendants in their charge or employ.

Section 137A. All ordinances, rules and regulations of the City of Wilmington in force at the date of the passage and approval of this Act, relating to public health and sanitation, and not inconsistent with any provision of this Act, including "The Sanitary Code of Wilmington, Delaware", approved May 24, 1945, shall be and shall continue in full force and effect until the same are changed, altered, amended or repealed, in whole or in part, by the Department of Health, or otherwise in the manner provided by law.

The Department of Health shall have sole and exclusive power, authority and jurisdiction to enact, adopt and promulgate ordinances, rules and regulations relating to the subjects within its authority and jurisdiction and to provide penalties for the violation of any thereof, and all ordinances, rules and regulations enacted, adopted and promulgated pursuant to the power and authority conferred by this Act shall have the force and effect of law.

Section 137B. The Department of Health shall appoint a Health Commissioner who shall be the chief administrative officer of the Department. The Health Commissioner so appointed shall be a qualified doctor of medicine and shall either (a) hold a degree in public health from an accredited college or university and have had at least two years' experience in an administrative public health position, or (b) without such degree in public health, shall have had at least five years' experience in an administrative public health position.

The Health Commissioner may be appointed by the Department to serve for a term of not more than four years, provided that, the Health Commissioner may be removed during any term only upon the concurrence of two-thirds of all the members of the Department of Health only for incompetency or failure to perform his duties in a reasonably satisfactory manner. No Health Commissioner shall be removed, as aforesaid, until he has been given reasonable notice in writing of the charges against him and has been given an opportunity for a hearing before the Department with the privilege of being represented by counsel at the hearing.

The Health Commissioner shall perform such duties and shall possess such authority as may be imposed and conferred upon him by this Act and by the Department from time to time. He shall engage in no other profession, business or employment for profit, except with the permission of the Department, and shall receive such compensation for his services as Health Commissioner as the Department may fix from time to time. He shall attend all meetings of the members of the Department and shall act in an advisory capacity without vote.

Section 137C. No person shall be elected, employed, promoted or discharged by the Department until the Health Commissioner shall have first recommended his election, employment, promotion or discharge. The compensation and duties of all officers and employees shall be fixed and prescribed by the Department from time to time upon the prior recommendation of the Health Commissioner. Provided, however, notwithstanding the foregoing provisions, in the event the Department shall fail to approve the recommendation of the Health Commissioner with regard to the election, employment, promotion or discharge of any person, or to the compensation and duties of any officer or employee, the Department may at a meeting called subsequent to such disagreement, upon the concurrence of two-thirds of all the members of the Department, elect, employ, promote or discharge any person or fix and prescribe the compensation and duties of any officer or employee; such action, together with the names of all members voting for and against such action, shall be entered upon the minutes of the Department. The Department shall have full authority and discretion to determine what positions and offices are necessary or desirable for the efficient administration of the Department and may, in the exercise of a like discretion, continue and at any time abolish any existing position or office.

On and after the passage of this Act, the Milk Inspector, or Inspectors, now appointed by The Council of The Mayor and Council of Wilmington shall be appointed by the Department of Health.

The provisions of this Section 137C shall apply to the Secretary as well as to all other officers and employees of the Department. In the exercise of the powers conferred by this Act, the Department shall at no time exceed the respective appropriations made to the Department by the Council of the Mayor and Council of Wilmington.

Section 137D. All acts and parts of acts inconsistent with any provision of this Act are hereby repealed; provided that this Act shall not invalidate the provisions of Section 125, Title 16, Delaware Code of 1953. This act shall be subject to the provisions of an act entitled, "An Act to Amend the Charter of the City of Wilmington, as Amended, by Providing the Power of Veto in the Mayor with Respect to All Rules and Regulations Enacted or Adopted by Any Board, Commission or Department of Said City Having the Effect of Law and Not for the Internal Administration or for the Management of the Affairs of Said Board, Commission or Department, and Providing a Means for the Adoption of Such Rules or Regulation Over Such Veto." Passed by the 117th General Assembly and approved by the Governor June 4, 1953.

Section 2. Section 136 of Chapter 207, Volume 17, Laws of Delaware, as amended by Section 2 of Chapter 224, Volume 47, Laws of Delaware, is amended by adding at the end thereof, the following new sentence:

Members of the Department of Health who are appointed or reappointed on or after the first day of July, A. D. 1953, shall serve without compensation, provided that members may be reimbursed for legitimate expenses incurred in the performance of their duties as members of the Department.

Section 3. If any provision of this Act or the application thereof to any person or circumstances shall be held invalid, such invalidity shall not effect any other provision or application of the Act which can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the several provisions of this Act are declared to be severable.

Approved July 10, 1953.