Title 33: Human Services
Chapter 1: DEPARTMENT FOR CHILDREN AND FAMILIES
Sub-Chapter 1: Policy, Organization, Powers And Duties
33 V.S.A. § 105. Commissioner; appointment, term, duties, and powers
§ 105. Commissioner; appointment, term, duties, and powers
(a) The Commissioner may exercise the powers and perform duties required for effective administration of the Department, and he or she shall determine the policies of the Department.
(b) In addition to other duties imposed by law, the Commissioner shall:
(1) Administer the laws assigned to the Department.
(2) Fix standards and issue regulations necessary to administer those laws and for the custody and preservation of records of the Department. Those regulations shall contain provisions restricting the use or disclosure of information contained in the records to purposes directly connected with the administration of the Department. As used in this subdivision, the word "records" includes records, papers, files, and communications.
(3) Appoint all necessary assistants, prescribe their duties, and issue regulations necessary to ensure that the assistants shall hold merit system status while in the employ of the Department, unless otherwise specifically provided by law.
(c) The Commissioner or the Governor, whenever the federal law so provides, may cooperate with the federal government in providing relief and work relief and community work and training programs in the State.
(d) The Commissioner, with the approval of the Attorney General, may enter into reciprocal agreements with social and child welfare agencies in other states in matters relating to social welfare, children, and families.
(e) The Commissioner shall ensure the provision of services to children and adolescents with a severe emotional disturbance in coordination with the Secretary of Education and the Commissioners of Mental Health and of Disabilities, Aging, and Independent Living in accordance with the provisions of chapter 43 of this title.
(f) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Commissioner may delegate to any appropriate employee of the Department any of the administrative duties and powers imposed on him or her by law, with the exception of the duties and powers enumerated in this section. The delegation of authority and responsibility shall not relieve the Commissioner of accountability for the proper administration of the Department.
(g) The Commissioner may publicly disclose findings or information about any case of child abuse or neglect that has resulted in the fatality or near fatality of a child, including information obtained under chapter 49 of this title, unless the State's Attorney or Attorney General who is investigating or prosecuting any matter related to the fatality requests the Commissioner to withhold disclosure, in which case the Commissioner shall not disclose any information until completion of any criminal proceedings related to the fatality or until the State's Attorney or Attorney General consents to disclosure, whichever occurs earlier. (Added 1967, No. 147, § 1; amended 1973, No. 101, § 6; 1983, No. 175 (Adj. Sess.); 2013, No. 131 (Adj. Sess.), § 6, eff. May 20, 2014.)