§11-16-4. Responsibility of alcohol beverage control commissioner; administrators, employees and agents; administration and enforcement expenses.

(a) The alcohol beverage control commissioner described under the provisions of article two, chapter sixty of this code shall have sole responsibility for the administration of this article, except for those responsibilities expressly vested in the tax commissioner under sections thirteen, fourteen and fifteen of this article.

All acts heretofore performed by the nonintoxicating beer commissioner under previous proceedings of this article are hereby again ratified and confirmed, and the commissioner shall succeed to the same position previously maintained by the nonintoxicating beer commissioner in all proceedings and official acts instituted and perfected under the provisions of this article prior to the effective date of this section.

(b) The commissioner shall appoint an adequate number of competent persons to serve as administrators, employees and agents of the commissioner for the purpose of keeping all necessary accounts and records required under the provisions of this article; investigating the books, accounts, records and other papers of retailers, distributors and brewers; investigating applicants for license and the places of business of retailers, distributors and brewers; procuring evidence with respect to violations of the provisions of this article, and particularly for use at hearings held by the commissioner and on proceedings instituted in court for the purpose of revoking or suspending licenses hereunder; and such administrators, employees and agents shall perform such other duties as the commissioner may direct. Such administrators, employees and agents shall have the right to enter any licensed premises in the state in the performance of their duties at any hour of the day or night when beer is being sold or consumed on such licensed premises. Refusal by any licensee or by any employee of a licensee to permit such administrators, employees or agents to enter the licensed premises shall be an additional cause for revocation or suspension of the license of such licensee by the commissioner. The compensation of such administrators, employees and agents shall be fixed by the commissioner: Provided, That the commissioner may employ up to eleven special investigators who shall be nonclassified exempt employees of the division.

(c) Services rendered the state by clerks, sheriffs, commissioners in chancery and special commissioners, designated by the court, and court reporters and stenographers performing services for said commissioner and fees of witnesses summoned on behalf of the state in proceedings to revoke or suspend retailer's licenses shall be treated as part of the expenses of administration and enforcement, and such officers and said other persons shall be paid the same fees and charges as would be chargeable for like services performed for an individual; and the compensation of such clerks, sheriffs and other persons shall be paid out of the amount allocated for the expense of administration enforcement, after the amount of such fees and other charges shall be certified by the court to the auditor.