The Cape Cod Commission Act outlines the purposes, duties, and powers of the agency as well as its structure. The Commission is considered a department of Barnstable County regional government, but is funded separately through the Cape Cod Environmental Protection Fund and supplemented by grants.
Each one of the 15 Cape towns appoints a representative to serve on the Cape Cod Commission. The board of Barnstable County Commissioners also appoint a minority representative, a Native American representative, and a representative from their own board. The Governor's Office appoints the remaining Cape Cod Commission member.
The 19 Cape Cod Commission board members are all citizen volunteers who serve in a quasi-judicial capacity. They are supported by a staff of about 40 professionals, all managed by the agency's executive director.
Commission staff members work to help better manage growth on Cape Cod through planning, technical assistance to the towns, and regulation of large-scale and significant development proposals.
Planners and technical staff have expertise in a variety of subjects including land use planning, community design, economic development, energy planning, affordable housing, historic preservation, open space and natural resources, water resources, coastal resources, transportation planning, landscape architecture, data analysis and mapping and more.