Department 7 is an independent firm under contract with the government — though this contract is more understood than officially documented. Indeed, officially, Department 7 is merely a privately-funded research institution investigating the paranormal alongside local, state and federal law enforcement agencies. It recieves no government funding, and is not overseen by any elected or appointed official.
Technically, all these facts are true; Department 7 is by no means a government entity, and supports its own endeavors entirely through legitimate (though unclear) private means. In theory, the Department simply reports to the officers of any police precinct it happens to be working within; yet due to the mindset of mundanes and the clouding nature of Shadow, this is a tenuous chain of command at best. The cops may request Department 7 assistance on unusual cases, and the Department may offer its expertise regarding certain crimes, but by and large both groups are content to follow their own leads and leave one another’s matters alone.
Department 7 has no one central heaquarters that most agents are aware of, instead operating primarily through of a system of networked contacts and field agents. The department does maintain a physical presence through its many safehouses in a number of cities, which serve the joint purpose of meeting place, housing and base of operations for the department’s active agents. Every major Department 7 interest also is home to a department outpost, which helps coordinate actions between agents, though its location is often a closely guarded secret — agents rarely travel to it via mundane means, and even an outpost’s overseer might not have the knowledge to place the facility on a map.