The heads of all county commissions and boards were invited. Only a handful showed up, but every service and every person in the county will be affected by what was discussed.
Everybody knows it's tough times," said Wake Co. Manager David Cooke.
Cooke says just to balance the budget, cuts will have to be made. And as required, each department has suggested reductions of 7 percent.
"It comes down to where can we reduce expenditures that have the least impact on the community?" said Cooke.
But some proposed cuts could have a huge impact on the community.
For example, the closing of the Southeast Regional Library in Garner. It would save nearly $800,000, but we're told it served about 500,000 people last year. Many who use the library say they will fight to keep it open.
"To a family, it's hugely important. When you don't have as many resources at home, it's very valuable," explained parent Mary Kelly.
Human services may also see big cuts, but board members say it's the smaller services, such as prevention programs, that may feel it most.
"Smaller programs will be negatively impacted and we'll probably lose some," said Human Services Board Member William Stanford.
While budget meetings may be unpopular, budget cuts are always less popular. But to lobby against them, you have to know about them.