The office of state commissioner of public institutions is hereby abolished, and, except as otherwise provided in this chapter, its powers and authority are transferred to the department of corrections which is hereby established. Whenever in this code reference is made to the state commissioner of public institutions, it shall be construed to mean the department of corrections.
The executive and administrative head of the department of corrections shall be a commissioner who shall be appointed, dismissed and paid in accordance with the provisions of section two-a, article seven, chapter six of this code.
The commissioner shall take and subscribe to the oath prescribed by the Constitution for public officials and shall execute an official bond in a penalty of $15,000, conditioned as required by law. Premiums on such bond shall be paid from appropriations made for the commissioner's office. Such bond shall be approved as to form by the Attorney General and as to sufficiency by the Governor and, when fully executed and approved, shall be filed in the office of the Secretary of State.
Nothing herein contained shall be construed so as to give the commissioner of corrections any authority in the administration, management or control of mental institutions, heretofore transferred to the department of mental health by an act of the Legislature, regular session, one thousand nine hundred fifty-seven.