Section 9K. Subject to appropriation, the commissioner may appoint and employ all deputy or assistant directors, one of whom shall be designated to the labor relations representative, officers, accountants, clerks, secretaries, agents, investigators, auditors and other officers and employees, necessary for the proper administration of chapter one hundred and fifty-one A. All persons so appointed or employed shall be selected on a non-partisan merit basis, subject to chapter thirty-one and the rules and regulations made thereunder, and also subject to such rules and regulations consistent therewith as may be adopted by the commissioner. The commissioner shall not appoint or employ any person who is serving as an officer or committee member of any political party. The commissioner shall fix the duties of all persons appointed and employed by him, and may authorize any such person to perform such duties, functions and powers of the commissioner as may be necessary or suitable for the proper administration and enforcement of chapter one hundred and fifty-one A. The commissioner may, in his discretion, bond any person handling moneys or signing checks hereunder.