The City of Carbondale operates under a Council-Manager form of Government. The Mayor and six City Council members are elected at-large for four-year staggered terms in non-partisan elections. The City Council acts as the policy making body for City Government and appoints a City Manager to serve as the Chief Administrative Officer. The Mayor is the official head of the City and with City Council consent is responsible for appointing members to the various boards, commissions, and committees of the City.
The City employs approximately 270 full-time employees. Services provided by the City include police and fire protection, development services, public works, and public library. The City also operates, on an enterprise basis, water and sanitary sewer operations, parking system maintenance and operations, solid waste collection and recycling operations, and City-owned rental properties maintenance and operations.