As administrators, commissioners are responsible for:
- Public roads and public works programs
- Public health services
- Planning of unincorporated areas
- Emergency services or civil defense programs
- County park and recreation systems
- Other services and programs which are not clearly the responsibility of another elected county official
County commissioners have a key role in a wide variety of community boards and commissions, which affect citizens within and even beyond their jurisdictions. Commissioners often serve on a variety of multi-county boards (such as health and transportation) with other public officials, to direct public policy. Within the county structure, commissioners are also responsible for appointing members of county boards and commissions (such as parks and planning).