TITLE 29

State Government

Departments of Government

CHAPTER 81. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE


A Department of Agriculture is established having the following powers, duties and functions:

(1) The Department of Agriculture may perform and shall be responsible for the performance of all of the powers, duties and functions heretofore vested in:

a. The State Board of Agriculture pursuant to Chapters 1, 3, 5, 11, 13, 15, 16, 17, 19, 21, 25, 31, 33 [repealed], 35, 37 [repealed], 39 [repealed], 51 [repealed], 53 [repealed], 55 [repealed], 63, 65, 67, 71, 73, 75, 87 and 90 of Title 3 and Chapter 41 of Title 16;

b. The State Board of Agriculture and the State Division of Weights and Measures pursuant to Chapter 51 of Title 6;

c. The State Forestry Department and the State Forestry Commission pursuant to Chapters 29, 31, 33 and 35 of Title 7 and State Tree Nursery.

(2) The administrative, ministerial, fiscal and clerical functions of the State Farmland Evaluation Advisory Committee set forth in § 8337 of Title 9.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8101; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 59 Del. Laws, c. 372, § 10.;

(a) The administrator and head of the Department shall be the Secretary of the Department of Agriculture, who shall be a person qualified by training and experience to perform the duties of the office. 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. The Secretary shall be paid an annual salary not in excess of $25,000. The Secretary of the Department of Agriculture shall become a bona fide resident of the State within 6 months after his or her appointment; provided, however, that upon good cause shown, the Governor may grant an additional extension of 6 months. After becoming a resident of the State, the Secretary shall continuously be a resident of the State as long as he or she retains the office. Failure to obtain or retain such residency shall be an automatic resignation from said office.

(b) In the event the position of Secretary is vacant, the Governor, by appointment, shall have the power to fill the position of Deputy Secretary if vacant. The Deputy Secretary so appointed shall serve at the pleasure of the Governor and, upon the position of Secretary being filled, such Deputy Secretary 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 a successor, the Governor may appoint the Deputy Secretary to serve as Acting Secretary. The Secretary may, during an absence from the State, appoint the Deputy Secretary 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 such absence or incapacity or until the Secretary's successor is duly qualified and appointed.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8102; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 67 Del. Laws, c. 52, §§ 1, 2; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1; 72 Del. Laws, c. 140, § 3.;

The Secretary may:

(1) Supervise, direct and account for the administration and operation of the Department, its divisions, subdivisions, offices, functions the Harness Racing and Thoroughbred Racing Commissions and positions authorized in the Annual Appropriations Act assigned to the Commissions and employees;

(2) Appoint and fix the salary of, with the written approval of the Governor, the Deputy Secretary, 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 the Harness Racing and Thoroughbred Racing Commissions and positions authorized in the Annual Appropriations Act assigned to the Commissions in the administration and operation of the Department as may be assigned by the Secretary;

(3) Establish an agricultural lands preservation section within the Office of the Secretary and appoint such personnel as may be necessary for the administration of the duties set forth in Chapter 9 of Title 3. Chapter 59 of this title shall be applicable to the employees of the agricultural lands preservation section;

(4) 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;

(5) Establish, consolidate or abolish such divisions, subdivisions and offices within the Department or transfer or combine the powers, duties and functions the Harness Racing and Thoroughbred Racing Commissions and positions authorized in the Annual Appropriations Act assigned to the Commissions of the divisions 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 the Harness Racing and Thoroughbred Racing Commissions and positions authorized in the Annual Appropriations Act assigned to the Commissions required by law shall be provided for and maintained;

(6) 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 the Harness Racing and Thoroughbred Racing Commissions and positions authorized in the Annual Appropriations Act assigned to the Commissions of the Department and whenever funds shall be available for such purpose. All necessary legal services shall be provided pursuant to Chapter 25 of this title;

(7) Delegate any of the Secretary's powers, duties or functions the Harness Racing and Thoroughbred Racing Commissions and positions authorized in the Annual Appropriations Act assigned to the Commissions to a director of a division except the power to remove employees of the Department or to fix their compensation;

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

(9) Maintain such facilities throughout the State as may be required for the effective and efficient operation of the Department;

(10) Adopt an official seal or seals for the Department.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8103; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 63 Del. Laws, c. 118, § 2; 67 Del. Laws, c. 52, §§ 3-5; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1; 75 Del. Laws, c. 89, § 305.;

The Division of Consumer Protection is established having such powers, duties and functions as may be assigned to it by the Secretary consistent with this chapter.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8104; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 67 Del. Laws, c. 52, § 6.;

The Division of Promotion and Production Support is established having such powers and duties and functions as may be assigned to it by the Secretary consistent with this chapter.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8105; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 67 Del. Laws, c. 52, § 7.;

The Division of Resource Management is established having such powers, duties and functions as may be assigned to it by the Secretary consistent with this chapter.

67 Del. Laws, c. 52, § 8.;

epealed by 65 Del. Laws, c. 174, § 2, eff. July 12, 1985;

epealed by 64 Del. Laws, c. 294, § 1, eff. June 30, 1984;

(a) There is established the Council on Forestry.

(b) The Council on Forestry shall serve in an advisory capacity to the Director of the Division of Production and Promotion and shall consider matters relating to the protection of state forest lands from fire, disease and insect damage including the application of control measures, the establishment of forest growth on denuded or nonforested lands and such other matters as may be referred to it by the Governor, Secretary of the Department or Director of the Division of Production and Promotion. 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.

(c) The Council on Forestry shall be composed of 7 members who shall be appointed for 3-year terms by the Governor.

(d) At least 3, but no more than 4 of the members of the Council shall be affiliated with 1 of the major political parties and at least 2, but no more than 3, of the members of the Council shall be affiliated with the other major political party; provided, however, there shall be no more than a bare majority representation of 1 major political party over the other major political party. Any person who declines to announce a 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 Chairperson 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 1 year and shall be eligible for reelection.

(g) Any replacement appointment to the Council to fill a vacancy prior to the expiration of a term shall be filled for the remainder of the term.

59 Del. Laws, c. 372, § 11; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

(a) There is established the Governor's Council on Agriculture.

(b) The Governor's Council on Agriculture shall be composed of not more than 7 members who shall be appointed by the Governor for 3-year terms. The Governor shall designate 1 member as Chairperson to serve at the pleasure of the Governor.

(c) The Governor's Council on Agriculture shall advise, recommend and refer to the Secretary of the Department matters which, in its opinion, are of departmental concern and shall consider such other matters as may be referred to it by the Governor or the Secretary of the Department. The Council may study, research, plan and advise the Secretary and the Governor on matters it deems appropriate to enable the Department to function in the best possible manner.

(d) At least 3, but no more than 4, members of the Council shall be affiliated with 1 of the major political parties and at least 2, but no more than 3, of the members shall be affiliated with the other major political party; provided, however, that there shall be no more than a bare majority representation of 1 major political party over the other major political party. Any person who declines to announce a 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) After the Council has been reduced to 7, any appointment, pursuant to the provisions hereof, to replace a member whose position becomes vacant prior to the expiration of the member's term shall be filled only for the remainder of that term.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8108; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 57 Del. Laws, c. 764, §§ 32A, 35; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

(a) The Governor's Council on Agriculture shall have access to all books, records, reports and other documents relating to the Department of Agriculture unless otherwise prohibited by law.

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

(c) The Chairperson of the Governor's Council on Agriculture and the chairpersons of the councils of the divisions of the 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.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8109; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 70 Del. Laws, c. 186, § 1.;

The following positions set forth in this section shall be exempt from Chapter 59 of this title:

(1) Secretary of Agriculture;

(2) Deputy Secretary.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8110; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 67 Del. Laws, c. 52, §§ 9, 10.;

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 Board of Agriculture, the State Division of Weights and Measures, the State Forestry Department, the State Forestry Commission, the State Apple Commission, the State Poultry Commission and all matters pertaining to privately owned forest and woodlands within the State immediately prior to April 15, 1970, and which are not otherwise hereinabove specifically transferred to the Department by this chapter.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8111; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 59 Del. Laws, c. 372, § 12.;

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.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8112; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1.;

(a) 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 Agriculture as created and established by this chapter.

(b) 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 by this chapter.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8113; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1.;

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.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8114; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1.;

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 this chapter, the powers, duties and functions have been transferred to the Department, the estate or interest therein expressed or described.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8115; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1.;

(a) The Secretary, in cooperation with the Deputy Secretary, 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.

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

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8116; 57 Del. Laws, c. 368, § 1; 67 Del. Laws, c. 52, § 11.;

All other laws or parts of laws now in effect inconsistent with this chapter are hereby repealed, superseded, modified or amended so far as necessary to conform to and give full force and effect to this chapter.

29 Del. C. 1953, § 8118; 57 Del. Laws, c. 764, § 32B.;