The Commissioners ensure compliance with provisions of the County Code and are granted authority to establish the annual county operating budget, approve expenditure of county dollars, authorize all county government contracts and manage all county properties and buildings. The functions of the Commissioners also include delivery of public services, regional planning and economic development, finance and budget management, and personnel administration. Under Pennsylvania law, the Commissioners also serve as members of various specialized boards such as the Board of Elections, Salary Board, Prison Board and Retirement Board.
The Commissioners appoint the Chief Clerk and other administrative staff to manage the daily operations of County government and to serve the public through an array of county services. The Commissioners have implemented a Performance-Based Management initiative that drives the allocation of resources toward areas of excellence and encourages objective benchmarking across County operations.
Cumberland County maintains various citizen advisory boards, authorities, commissions and task forces to involve citizens in the planning and decision making of county government. Volunteers serve the County as members of these groups. The Commissioners use information from these sources to develop and approve the annual budget and related management plans. The Commissioners created the Municipal Advisory Board comprised of elected officials from each municipality in the County to exchange ideas and initiate action plans. They also created the Emergency Services Action Panel in an effort to work with emergency services representatives to discuss issues of mutual concern and work together to achieve effective solutions.