§5-16B-5. Director of the children's health insurance program; qualifications; powers and duties.
(a) An agency director shall be appointed by the governor, with the advice and consent of the Senate, and shall be responsible for the implementation, administration and management of the children's health insurance program created under this article. The director shall have at least a bachelor's degree and a minimum of three years' experience in health insurance administration.

(b) The director shall employ any administrative, technical and clerical employees that are required for the proper administration of the program and for the work of the board. He or she shall present recommendations and alternatives for the design of the annual plans and other actions undertaken by the board in furtherance of this article.

(c) The director is responsible for the administration and management of the program and has the power and authority to make all rules necessary to effectuate the provisions of this article. Nothing in this article may be construed as limiting the director's otherwise lawful authority to manage the program on a day-to-day basis.

(d) The director has exclusive authority to execute any contracts that are necessary to effectuate the provisions of this article: Provided, That the board shall approve all contracts for the provision of services or insurance coverage under the program. The provisions of article three, chapter five-a of this code, relating to the division of purchasing of the department of finance and administration, shall not apply to any contracts for any health insurance coverage, health services, or professional services authorized to be executed under the provisions of this article: Provided, however, That before entering into any contract the director shall invite competitive bids from all qualified entities and shall deal directly with those entities in presenting specifications and receiving quotations for bid purposes. The director shall award those contracts on a competitive basis taking into account the experience of the offering agency, corporation, insurance company or service organization. Before any proposal to provide benefits or coverage under the plan is selected, the offering agency, corporation, insurance company or service organization shall provide assurances of utilization of essential community health service providers to the greatest extent practicable. In evaluating these factors, the director may employ the services of independent, professional consultants. The director shall then award the contracts on a competitive basis.

(e) The director shall issue requests for proposals on a regional or statewide basis from essential community health service providers for defined portions of services under the children's health insurance plan and shall, to the greatest extent practicable, either contract directly with, or require participating providers to contract with, essential community health service providers to provide the services under the plan.

(f) Subject to the advice and consent of the board, the director may require reinsurance of primary contracts, as contemplated in the provisions of sections fifteen and fifteen-a, article four, chapter thirty-three of this code.