The state investment officer shall employ qualified personnel as may be required to carry out the duties and responsibilities required under the Nebraska State Funds Investment Act. Such employees shall be deemed state employees and covered by the State Personnel System pursuant to sections 81-1301 to 81-1368 and other personnel rules or regulations. At the discretion of the Nebraska Investment Council, investment managers who are employees of the council may be exempted from the State Personnel System. The state investment officer shall be exempt from the State Personnel System. All employees shall comply with state accounting regulations and applicable state and federal laws in the discharge of their duties. With the approval of the Governor, the state investment officer may retain counsel, auditors, financial advisors and private consultants on a contract basis or otherwise to render such professional service or advice as he or she may require in the performance of his or her duties.