CHAPTER 583

AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 29, DELAWARE CODE, BY CREATING A NEW CHAPTER TO BE DESIGNATED AS CHAPTER 86 RELATING TO THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AFFAIRS AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, DEFINING ITS ORGANIZATION, POWERS, DUTIES AND FUNCTIONS AND PROVIDING A SUPPLEMENTARY APPROPRIATION TO THE GOVERNOR TO IMPLEMENT THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT.

Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Delaware:

Section 1. Title 29, Delaware Code, is hereby amended by adding a new Chapter thereto to be designated as Chapter 86 to read as follows:

CHAPTER 86. DEPARTMENT OF COMMUNITY AFFAIRS

AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

§ 8601. Department of Community Affairs and Economic Development

A Department of Community Affairs and Economic Development is hereby established.

§ 8602. Secretary; Division Directors; Acting Secretary; appointment

(a) The administrator and head of the Department shall be the Secretary of Community Affairs and Economic Development, who shall be a person qualified by training and experience to perform the duties of his office and preference shall be given to a resident of this State provided that he is acceptable and equally qualified. The Secretary shall be appointed by the Governor, with the advice and consent of the Senate, and shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor. He shall be paid an annual salary not in excess of $28,000.

(b) In the event the position of Secretary is vacant, the Governor, by appointment, shall have the power to fill the position or positions of division director as are vacant. Directors so appointed shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor and upon the position of Secretary being filled such directors may be removed by the Secretary with the written approval of the Governor.

(c) In the event of death, resignation, temporary incapacity or removal of the Secretary and prior to the appointment of his successor, the Governor may appoint the director of any division of the Department to serve as Acting Secretary. The Secretary may, during his absence from the State, appoint the director of any division of the Department to serve as Acting Secretary during such absence. In either case the Acting Secretary shall have all the powers and shall perform all the duties and functions of the Secretary during his absence or incapacity or until his successor is duly qualified and appointed.

§ 8603. Powers, duties and functions of the Secretary

The Secretary shall have the following powers, duties and functions:

(a) To supervise, direct and account for the administration and operation of the Department, its divisions, subdivisions, offices, functions and employees;

(b) To appoint and fix the salary of, with the written approval of the Governor, the following division directors and office heads, who may be removed from office by the Secretary with the written approval of the Governor, and who shall have such powers, duties and functions in the administration and operation of the Department as may be assigned by the Secretary:

(1) A Director of the Division of Economic Development who shall be known as the Director of Economic Development and who shall be a person qualified by training and experience to perform the duties of his office.

(0) A Director of the Division of Housing who shall be known as the Director of Housing and who shall be a person qualified by training and experience to perform the duties of his office.

(3) A Director of the Division of Libraries who shall be known as the Director of Libraries and who shall be a person qualified by training and experience to perform the duties of his office.

(4) A Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs who shall be known as the Director of Consumer Affairs, and who shall be a person qualified by training and experience to perform the duties of his office.

(5) An administrator and head of the Office of Human Relations who shall be known as the Chief of Human Relations and who shall be a person qualified by training and experience to perform the duties of his office.

(6) An administrator and head of the Office of Local Governmental Services who shall be known as the Chief of Local Governmental Services and who shall be a person qualified by training and experience to perform the duties of his office.

(c) To appoint such additional personnel as may be necessary for the administration and operation of the Department within such limitations as may be imposed by law;

(d) To establish, consolidate or abolish such divisions, subdivisions and offices within the Department or transfer or combine the powers, duties and functions of the divisions, subdivisions and offices within the Department as the Secretary, with the written approval of the Governor, may deem necessary, provided that all powers, duties and functions required by law shall be provided for and maintained;

(e) To make and enter into any and all contracts, agreements or stipulations, and to retain, employ and contract for the services of private and public consultants, research and technical personnel and to procure by contract, consulting, research, technical and other services and facilities, whenever the same shall be deemed by the Secretary necessary or desirable in the performance of the functions of the Department and whenever funds shall be available for such purpose. All necessary legal services shall be provided pursuant to Title 29, Delaware Code, Chapter 25;

(f) To delegate any of his powers, duties or functions to a director of a division except his power to remove employees of the Department or to fix their compensation;

(g) To establish and promulgate such rules and regulations governing the administration and operation of the Department as may be deemed necessary by him and which are not inconsistent with the laws of this State;

(h) To maintain such facilities throughout the State as may be required for the effective and efficient operation of the Department;

() To adopt an official seal or seals for the Department.

§ 8604. Office of Human Relations

(a) The Office of Human Relations is hereby established having powers, duties and functions as follows:

(1) The Office of Human Relations shall have the power to perform and shall be responsible for the performance of all the administrative, ministerial, fiscal and clerical functions, including but not limited to appointment and removal of employees as provided by Jaw, heretofore vested in the State Human Relations Commission, and all the powers, duties and functions heretofor vested in the Director of the State Human Relations Commission pursuant to the provisions of Title 31, Delaware Code, § 3003.

(2) Except as provided in Section 8604 (a) (1) above, the membership, remuneration, organization, meetings, powers, duties and functions of the State Human Relations Commission shall remain as prescribed in Title 6, Delaware Code, Chapters 45 and 46 and Title 31, Delaware Code, Chapter 30.

§ 8605. Office of Local Governmental Services

(a) The Office of Local Governmental Services is hereby established having powers, duties and functions as follows:

(1) Cooperate with local governments and their instrumentalities and provide technical assistance, information, data, and other materials which may be helpful or necessary, to enable such units to discharge their responsibilities.

(2) Assist the Governor in coordinating the activities of State agencies which have an impact on the solution of problems of and the implementation of the plans of local governments.

(3) Encourage, and when requested, assist local governments and their instrumentalities in their efforts to develop mutual and cooperative solutions to their common problems.

(0) Cooperate with, and provide assistance to, local governments and their instrumentalities in establishing and organizing neighborhood information centers and referral services.

(0) Study existing laws that affect the fiscal and administrative structures of local governments and their instrumentalities and those State activities significantly involved therein; and recommend to the Governor and the General Assembly changes in such laws and activities as it deems necessary to strengthen local government.

(1) Carry out continuing studies and analyses of the problems faced by local governments with the State and make such recommendations for administrative or legislative action as it deems necessary. In carrying out such studies and analyses, particular attention should be paid to the problems of urban, suburban, rural and other areas in which social, economic and population factors are rapidly changing.

(2) Cooperate with, and provide assistance to, other State agencies and officials, official organizations of elected officials in the State, local governments and their instrumentalities and officials, and federal agencies and officials, in carrying out the functions and duties of this Office and this Department.

(3) Consult with private groups and individuals, and, if, the Secretary deems it desirable, hold public hearings to obtain information for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Chapter.

(4) Develop and test programs and projects or otherwise provide a program of practical research in the solution of problems of local government. In furtherance thereof and consistent with the laws of this State, the Office of Local Governmental Services may enter into contracts to administer various functions or services to or for local governments and their instrumentalities.

(10) Such other powers, duties and functions as the Secretary may assign which are not otherwise inconsistent with the laws of this State.

§ 8606. Division of Economic Development

(a) The Division of Economic Development is hereby established having powers, duties and functions as follows:

(1) The Division of Economic Development shall have the power to perform and shall be responsible for the performance of all the powers, duties and functions heretofore vested in:

(i) The Delaware State Development Department pursuant to the provisions of Title 29, Delaware Code, Chapter 41, excepting § 4103 (c) thereof;

(ii) The State of Delaware Industrial Building Commission pursuant to the provisions of Title 6, Delaware Code, Chapter 70.

§ 8607. Council on Industrial Financing

(a) There is hereby established the Council on Industrial Financing.

(b) The Council on Industrial Financing shall serve in an advisory capacity to the Director of Economic Development and shall consider matters relating to the refinancing and modernization of industrial facilities in the State of Delaware and such other matters as may be referred to it by the Governor, Secretary of the Department or Director of Economic Development. The Council may study, research, plan and advise the Director, the Secretary, and the Governor on matters it deems appropriate to enable the Division to function in the best possible manner.

() The Council on Industrial Financing shall be composed of the members of the State of Delaware. Industrial Building Commission whose terms, as of the effective date of this Chapter, have not expired. Each member shall serve as a member of the Council on Industrial Financing for the period of his unexpired term unless he vacates his position by resignation, death or incapacity.

The council shall be composed of seven (7) members. The Governor shall appoint new members. The terms of the new members shall be staggered. The first two (2) appointees shall serve for a term of one (1) year, the next two (2) appointees shall serve for a term of two (2) years and the next three (3) appointees shall serve for a term of three (3) years. Thereafter, all new appointees shall serve for a term of three (3) years.

(d) At least three (3), but no more than four (4) members of the Council shall be affiliated with one of the major political parties and at least two (2), but no more than three (3), of the members shall be affiliated with the other major political party; provided, however, there shall be no more than a bare majority representation of one major political party over the other major political party. Any person who declines to announce his political affiliation shall also be eligible for appointment as a member of the Council.

(e) Members of the Council shall serve without compensation except that they may be reimbursed for reasonable and necessary expenses incident to their duties as members of the Council.

(f) A Chairman of the Council shall be chosen by the members of the Council from among its members and shall serve in that capacity for a term of one (1) year and shall be eligible for reelection.

(g) Any appointment, pursuant to the provisions hereof, to replace a member whose position becomes vacant prior to the expiration of his term, shall be filled only for the remainder of that term.

§ 8608. Division of Housing

(a) The Division of Housing is hereby established having powers, duties and functions as follows:

(1) The Division of Housing shall have the power to perform and shall be responsible for the performance of all the powers, duties and functions heretofore vested in the Department of Housing pursuant to the provisions of Title 31, Delaware Code, Chapters 40, 43 and 45, and the State Bureau of Housing pursuant to the provisions of Title 31, Delaware Code, § 4303.

§. 8609. Council on Housing

(a) There is hereby established the Council on Housing.

(b) The Council on Housing shall serve in an advisory capacity to the Director of Housing and shall consider matters relating to housing in the State of Delaware and such other matters as may be referred to it by the Governor, Secretary of the Department or Director of Housing. The Council may study, research, plan and advise the Director, the Secretary and the Governor on matters it deems appropriate to enable the Division to function in the best possible manner.

(c) The Council on Housing, upon the effective date of this Chapter, shall be composed of the appointed members of the State Bureau of Housing whose terms, as of the effective date of this Chapter, have not expired. Each member shall serve as a member of the Council on Housing for the period of his unexpired term unless he vacates his position by resignation, death, or incapacity. The Council shall be composed of seven (7) members. The Governor shall appoint new members. The terms of the new members shall be staggered. The first two (2) appointees shall serve for a term of one (1) year, the next two (2) appointees shall serve for a term of two (2) years and the next three (3) appointees shall serve for a term of three (3) years. Thereafter, all new appointees shall serve for a term of three (3) years.

() At least three (3), but no more than four (4) members of the Council shall be affiliated with one of the major political parties and at least two (2), but no more than three (3), of the members shall be affiliated with the other major political party; provided, however, there shall be no more than a bare majority representation of one major political party over the other major political party. Any person who declines to announce his political affiliation shall also be eligible for appointment as a member of the Council.

() Members of the Council shall serve without compensation except that they may be reimbursed for reasonable and necessary expenses incident to their duties as members of the Council.

(a) A Chairman of the Council shall be chosen by the members of the Council from among its members and shall serve in that capacity for a term of one (1) year and shall be eligible for reelection.

(g) Any appointment, pursuant to the provisions hereof, to replace a member whose position becomes vacant prior to the expiration of his term, shall be filled only for the remainder of that term.

§ 8610. Division of Libraries

(a) The Division of Libraries is hereby established having powers, duties and functions as follows:

(1) The Division of Libraries shall have the power to perform and shall be responsible for the performance of all the powers, duties and functions heretofore vested in the Library Commission for the State of Delaware pursuant to the provisions of Title 14, Delaware Code, Chapter 71.

§ 8611. Council on Libraries

(a) There is hereby established the Council on Libraries.

(b) The Council on Libraries shall serve in an advisory capacity to the Director of Libraries and shall consider matters relating to libraries in the State and such other matters as may be referred to it by the Governor, Secretary of the Department or Director of Libraries. The council may study, research, plan and advise the Director, the Secretary and the Governor on matters it deems appropriate to enable the Division to function in the best possible manner.

(c) The Council on Libraries, upon the effective date of this Chapter, shall be composed of the members of the Library Commission for the State of Delaware whose terms, as of the effective date of this Chapter, have not expired. Each member shall serve as a member of the Council on Libraries for the period of his unexpired term unless he vacates his position by resignation, death or incapacity. When the number of the members has been reduced to less than seven (7) by reason of expiration of terms, resignations or incapacity, the Governor shall appoint new members. The terms of the new members shall be staggered. The first two (2) appointees shall serve for a term of one (1) year, the next two (2) appointees shall serve for a term of two (2) years and the next three (3) appointees shall serve for a term of three (3) years. Thereafter, all new appointees shall serve for a term of three (3) years. When the number of members has been reduced to less than seven (7) the Council shall thereafter be composed of not more than seven (7) members.

(d) When the number of members of the Council has been reduced to less than seven (7), at least three (3), but no more than four (4), of the newly appointed members shall be affiliated with one of the major political parties. At least two (2), but no more than three (3) of the newly appointed members shall be affiliated with the other major political party; provided, however, there shall be no more than a bare majority representation of one major political party over the other major political party. Any person who declines to announce his political affiliation shall be eligible for appointment as a member of the Council.

(e) Members of the Council shall serve without compensation except that they may be reimbursed for reasonable and necessary expenses incident to their duties as members of the Council.

(f) A chairman of the Council shall be chosen by the members of the Council from among its members and shall serve in that capacity for a term of one (1) year and shall be eligible for reelection.

(g) After the Council has been reduced to seven (7), any appointment, pursuant to the provisions hereof, to replace a member whose position becomes vacant prior to the expiration of his term, shall be filled only for the remainder of that term.

§ 8612. Division of Consumer Affairs

(a) The Division of Consumer Affairs is hereby established having powers, duties and functions as follows, which shall be performed by the Director, or his duly authorized designee, with the approval of the Secretary:

(1) Issue cease and desist orders against any person, firm, business, corporation, proprietorship, partnership or otherwise when there has been any violation of Title 6, Delaware Code, §§ 2513 and 2532. This section shall not limit any powers of the Attorney General.

(i) Cease and desist orders shall be in writing and shall state what alleged violations have occurred or are about to occur which are the basis for the issuance of such orders.

() Cease and desist orders shall be served upon the violator and a copy shall be filed in the office of the Prothonotary of the County wherein is located the violator's main place of business in the State of Delaware or in the office of the Prothonotary of the County where the violation occurred, or both.

(i) No cease and desist order shall be issued by the Division in cases where the Attorney General has filed a complaint seeking injunctive action, in cases where the Attorney General has signed a cease and desist agreement which has not been violated, or in cases where an injunction has been issued.

(ii) Upon receipt of such cease and desist order, the violator shall immediately cease and desist from conducting any activity which has been ordered ceased. Any person or agent or employee of any corporation, partnership or other business who conducts any activity which he has been ordered to cease shall be considered to be in contempt of the Consumer Affairs Board and shall be proceeded against in accordance with § 8613 (b) (3).

(2) Receive and forward to appropriate agencies of the State, for final processing and determination, complaints from any citizen relating to consumer affairs.

(3) Advise the Governor and the Attorney General as to all matters affecting the interests of the public as consumers.

(4) Review, and make recommendations regarding, State policies and programs of primary importance to consumers or the unmet consumer needs which can be met appropriately through State action.

(5) Review, and make recommendations regarding, State policies, programs and operations wherein the view of consumers should be made available to State officials and the manner in which such views can be communicated to appropriate departments and agencies.

(6) Recommend the enactment of such legislation as it deems necessary to protect and promote the interests of the public as consumers.

(7) Cooperate with and provide assistance to Federal, State and local governmental agencies and activities relating to consumer affairs.

(8) Appear before Federal, State and local governmental departments, agencies and commissions to represent and be heard on behalf of consumer interests.

(9) Cooperate with and establish necessary liaison with consumer organizations.

(0) Promulgate such rules and regulations as the Division may be given by law.

(1) Perform all the necessary administrative and clerical functions of the Consumer Affairs Board.

(2) Do such other acts as may be necessary and proper to the exercise of the powers, duties and functions conferred by this Chapter.

(b) The Attorney General shall represent the Division in all administrative and judicial proceedings.

§ 8613. Consumer Affairs Board

(a) There is hereby established a Consumer Affairs Board to consist of three (3) members to be appointed by the Governor, with the advice and consent of the Senate:

(1) One (1) member of the Board shall be an attorney.

(2) The terms of the members shall be staggered. The first appointee shall serve for a term of two (2) years, the second appointee shall serve for a term of three (3) years and the third appointee shall serve for a term of four (4) years. Thereafter, all new appointees shall serve for a term of four (4) years.

(3) The Governor shall designate the Chairman from among the members of the Board who shall serve as Chairman at the pleasure of the Governor.

(4) The Chairman shall be paid $1,500 annually, and the remaining two members shall be paid $1,000 each.

(5) At least one member of the Board shall be affiliated with one of the major political parties, and at least one member shall be affiliated with the other major political party. Any person who declines to announce his political affiliation shall be eligible for appointment as a member of the Board.

(6) Any appointment, pursuant to the provisions hereof, to replace a member whose: position becomes vacant prior to the expiration of his term, shall be filled only for the remainder of that term.

(7) The Governor, upon due notice and hearing, may remove any member of the Board from office for cause.

(b) The Board shall hold whatever meetings or hearings are necessary to accomplish its business and shall have the following powers, duties and functions:

(1) The Board shall hear appeals from any order of the Director of Consumer Affairs. The Board shall review the order of the Director and it may uphold, alter, amend or vacate such order. Any party to the action may appeal such decision to the Superior Court but such appeal shall be on the record of the Director's written order, any transcript or record before the Board and the final order of the Board.

(i) Such appeal must be made within 30 days of notification of the Board's decision.

(ii) The Superior Court is vested with jurisdiction to hear and determine all appeals front the Consumer Affairs Board and may, by proper rules, prescribe the procedure to be followed in such appeals. Every such appeal shall be determined by the Court without the aid of a jury.

() The Director of Consumer Affairs shall have the same right of appeal from any decision of the Consumer Affairs Board as any other party to the action.

(2) The Board may issue subpoenas and administer oaths in any proceeding and in all other cases where it is necessary in the exercise of its powers, duties and functions. It may examine persons as witnesses, take evidence, require the production of documents, and do all other things conformable to law which are necessary to enable it effectively to discharge its powers, duties and functions. Such oaths may be administered and such subpoenas issued by any member of the Board.

(i) Any person against whom action -has been brought or who is appealing any action of the Division shall be entitled to be represented by counsel and to have the Board issue subpoenas for any persons or documents deemed necessary by that person to properly present his case. The cost of such subpoenas and their service shall be paid by the person so requesting them.

(ii) Any subpoena, process, or order of the Board, or any notice or paper requiring service, may be served by a Sheriff, Deputy Sheriff, Constable, or any employee of the Division and return thereof made to the Board. Process servers shall receive the same fees as are provided by law for like service in civil actions, except that if service is made by an employee of the Division, he shall not receive any fee, but shall be paid his actual expenses.

(3) If any person, in proceedings before the Board, disobeys or resists any lawful order or process; or misbehaves during a hearing or so near the place thereof as to obstruct the hearing; or neglects to produce, after having been ordered to do so, any pertinent document; or refuses to appear; after having been subpoenaed; or, upon appearing, refuses to take the oath as a witness; or, after having taken the oath, refuses to be examined, according to law, the Board shall certify the facts under the hand of its Chairman to any Judge of the Superior Court, who shall thereupon hear the evidence as to the acts complained of. If the evidence so warrants, the Judge shall punish such person in the same manner and to the same extent as for a contempt committed before the Superior Court, or shall commit such person upon the same conditions as if the doing of the forbidden act had occurred with reference to the process of, or in the presence of the Superior Court.

(0) The Board in its hearings shall not be bound by the strict rules of evidence but shall take whatever evidence is necessary to justly and properly decide the matter before it.

(1) The Board may promulgate such regulations and rules as it deems necessary to carry out the purposes of this section or any other powers, duties or functions given to it by law.

§ 8614. Council on Consumer Affairs

(a) There is hereby established a Council on Consumer Affairs.

(b) The Council on Consumer Affairs shall serve in an advisory capacity to the Director of Consumer Affairs and shall consider matters relating to the protection and guidance of consumers and businesses and such other matters as may be referred to it by the Governor, Secretary of the Department of the Director of Consumer Affairs. The Council may also study, research, plan and advise the Director, the Secretary, and the Governor on matters it deems appropriate to enable the Division to function in the best possible manner.

() The Council on Consumer Affairs shall be composed of seven (7) members, appointed by the Governor. The terms of the members shall be staggered. The first two (2) appointees shall serve for a term of one (1) year, the next two (2) appointees shall serve for a term of two (2) years and the next three (3) shall serve for a term of three (3) years. Thereafter, all new appointees shall serve for a term of three (3) years.

(a) At least three (3), but no more than four (4) members of the Council shall be affiliated with one of the major political parties and at least two (2), but no more than three (3), of the members shall be affiliated with the other major political party; provided, however, there shall be no more than a bare majority representation of one major political party over the other major political party. Any person who declines to announce his political affiliation shall also be eligible for appointment as a member of the Council.

(b) Members of the Council shall serve without compensation except that they may be reimbursed for reasonable and necessary expenses incident to their duties as members of the Council.

A chairman of the Council shall be chosen by the members of the Council from among its members and shall serve in that capacity for a term of one (1) year and shall be eligible for reelection.

(g) Any appointment, pursuant to the provisions hereof, to replace a member whose position becomes vacant prior to the expiration of his term, shall be filled only for the remainder of that term.

§ 8615. Books, records; access; Annual Report

(a) The various councils of the divisions of the Department of Community Affairs and Economic Development shall have access to all books, records, reports, and other documents relating to their respective divisions unless otherwise prohibited by law.

(b) The chairman of the councils of the divisions of this Department shall make an annual report of the activities of each of said councils to the Secretary of the Department, the Governor and the General Assembly and render such other reports as the Secretary, the Governor or the General Assembly may from time to time request or as may be required by law.

§ 8616. Exemptions

The following positions set forth in this Act shall be exempt from the provisions of Title 29, Delaware Code, Chapter 59:

(a) Secretary of Community Affairs and Economic Development

(b) Director of Economic Development

(c) Director of Housing

(d) Director of Libraries

(e) Director of Consumer Affairs

(f) Chief of Human Relations

(g) Chief of Local Governmental Services

§ 8617. Functions prior to effective date of this Chapter

The Department, through appropriate divisions, subdivisions, and offices, shall have the power to perform and shall be responsible for the performance of all the powers, duties and functions vested by law in the State Human Relations Commission, the. Delaware State Development Department, the Industrial Building Commission, the Department of Housing and the Library Commission for the State of Delaware immediately prior to the effective date of this Chapter and which are not otherwise hereinabove specifically- transferred to the Department by the provisions of this Chapter; excepting only those powers, duties and functions hereinabove expressly vested in or retained by any such person, department, board, commission or agency.

§ 8618. Appeals

Any and all rights of appeal now existing by law with respect to any act or acts constituting the exercise of any function or functions hereby transferred to the Department or to any division or subdivision thereof shall continue to exist with respect to such act or acts as hereafter performed by the Department or by the division, subdivision or office to which such function is hereby transferred, and each such appeal shall be perfected in the manner heretofore provided by law.

§ 8619. Transfers and continuity

(a) All books, records, papers, maps, charts, plans and other material including, but not limited to, any equipment in the possession of any agency of the State and used in connection with a function hereby transferred to the Department shall on the effective date of this Chapter be delivered into the custody of the Department. All investigations, petitions, hearings, and legal proceedings pending before or instituted by any agency from which functions are hereby transferred and not concluded prior to the effective date of this Chapter shall continue unabated and remain in full force and effect, notwithstanding the passage of this Chapter and where necessary, may be completed before, by, or in the name of the Department, All orders, rules and regulations made by any agency from which functions are hereby transferred and governing such functions and which are in effect upon the effective date of this Chapter shall remain in full force and effect until revoked or modified in accordance with law by the Department. All contracts and obligations of any agency made or undertaken in the performance of a function hereby transferred to the Department and being in force on the effective date of this Chapter, shall, notwithstanding the provisions of this Chapter, remain in full force and effect 'and be performed by the Department.

(b) All employees of any commission, board, department, council or agency, to the extent that the same are consistent with this Chapter and in connection with a function hereby transferred to the Department, shall continue and be deemed to be the employees of the Department on the affective date of this Chapter and, where applicable, with all the benefits accrued as merit employees as of the effective date of this Chapter.

(c) All definitions and references to any commission, board, department, council or agency which appear in any other Act or law shall, to the extent that the same are consistent with this Chapter and in connection with a function hereby transferred to the Department, be construed as referring and relating to the Department of Community Affairs and Economic Development as created and established herein.

(d) All definitions and references to any director, commissioner, executive secretary, commission, board or council member or other similar person which appear in any other Act or law, shall, to the extent that same are consistent with this Chapter, and in connection with a function hereby transferred to the Department, be construed as referring or relating to such person or persons and their powers, duties and functions as established and created herein.

§ 8620. Annual Report

The Secretary of the Department shall make an annual report to the Governor and the General Assembly of the Department's operations, and render such other reports as the Governor or General Assembly may from time to time request or as may be required by law.

§ 8621. Misnomer of Department in donation

Any misnomer shall not defeat or annul any gift, grant, devise or bequest to the Department if it sufficiently appears by the will, conveyance or other writing, that the party making the same intended to pass and convey thereby to the Department or to any commission, board, department, authority, council or agency, to which, by the provisions of the Act, the powers, duties and functions have been transferred to the Department, the estate or interest therein expressed or described.

§ 8622. Budgeting and financing

The Secretary, in cooperation with the division directors, shall prepare a proposed budget for the operation of the Department to be submitted for the consideration of the Governor and the General Assembly. The Department shall be operated within the limitation of the Annual Appropriation and any other funds appropriated by the General Assembly.

Special funds may be used in accordance with approved programs, grants and appropriations.

§ 8623. Severability

If any provision of this Chapter, or of any rule, regulation or order thereunder of the application of such provision to any person or circumstances, shall be held invalid, the remainder of this Chapter and the application of such provisions of this Chapter or of such rule, regulation or order to persons or circumstances other than those to which it is held invalid, shall not be affected hereby.

Section 2. The provisions of Section 1 of this Act shall become effective on the date which the Governor designates in an executive order stating that he has found it administratively feasible to implement this Act or on January 1, 1971, whichever first occurs.

Section 3. The sum of fifty thousand dollars ($50,000) is hereby appropriated to the Governor for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1971, for the purpose of implementing the provisions of this Act. This appropriation shall be considered as a supplementary appropriation and shall be paid out of funds not otherwise appropriated and any portion thereof which is unexpended or unencumbered as of June 30, 1971, shall revert to the General Fund.

Section 4. Any sum appropriated to any board, commission, department, council or agency affected by this Act and which, upon the effective date of this Act, are unencumbered or unexpended shall be and are hereby appropriated and transferred to the Department of Community Affairs and Economic Development.

Approved June 22, 1970.