Once part of Lancashire, Staveley-in-Cartmel and the Furness area became part of Cumbria in 1974. Services including education, social services and highways are provided by Cumbria County Council (Highways England for the A590) and housing and waste collection by South Lakeland District Council. Health services are provided in the main by the NHS. As the Parish is located entirely within the Lake District National Park, planning and development control is the responsibility of the Lake District National Park Authority.
The Parish Council comprises elected members and interested residents co-opted on to the Council as vacancies arise. One of its main responsibilities is to comment on planning applications. These and other matters are dealt with as they arise at meetings every second month. In between meetings, day-to-day running of Council business is undertaken by the Parish Clerk in liaison with the Chair.
Being a collection of small and scattered settlements, the main communication with the public is via the Parish notice boards, although the Council is required to operate a website by April 2016. The boards display Council information and meeting details and are located at:
- Newby Bridge – junction of the A590 and Canny Hill Road
- Staveley-in-Cartmel – village centre by the Old Vicarage
- Barber Green – opposite Yew Tree Farm
- Ayside – east of village centre by Belman Beck