Addressing the Board

The Wake Forest Board of Commissioners is interested in the concerns of all residents and welcomes their input on the issues facing our community. In order to provide for an effective, orderly airing of opinion, certain rules have been adopted and employed by the board for many years on how citizens may make their views known. The following information summarizes those procedures.

  • For more information, contact Town Clerk Deeda Harris at 919-435-9413 or .


Board of Commissioners Agendas
An agenda is prepared for each board of commissioners meeting and work session. Agendas are available in the town clerk's office, 301 S. Brooks St., between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., on the Friday prior to the day of the meeting. In addition, agendas for regular board of commissioners meetings are available online and through the Town's E-Notifier email subscription service. On the day of the meetings, agendas are provided on the information table located at the entrance to the board chambers.


Addressing the Board of Commissioners During Meetings

Board of Commissioners Work Session – 1st Tuesday of Each Month
The board of commissioners convenes for a work session on the first Tuesday of each month at 5:30 p.m. in the board chambers, located on the second floor of town hall, 301 S. Brooks St. The purpose of the work session is to review the agenda items for the regular board meeting and receive staff reports and project updates.

Citizens who wish to address the board of commissioners on an issue under consideration during the work session or on an issue that will likely require considerable discussion are encouraged to contact the town clerk, specify the topic and request time on the work session agenda.


Board of Commissioners Meeting - 3rd Tuesday of Each Month
The regular meeting of the board of commissioners is held the third Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. in the board chambers. The purpose of the regular board meeting is to take formal action on issues affecting the Town of Wake Forest.

The order of business during regular board of commissioners meetings is as follows:

  1. Call to order

  2. Pledge of allegiance

  3. Approval of agenda

  4. Approval of minutes

  5. Presentations

  6. Public Hearings* / Public Comment**

  7. Consent Agenda

  8. Legislative Items

  9. Planning Items

  10. Administration and Financial Items

  11. Public Services Items

  12. Parks and Recreation Items

  13. Public Safety Items

  14. Other Business

  15. Closed Session – when necessary

  16. Adjournment


Public Hearings*
The purpose of a public hearing is to seek formal input as required by ordinance or statute on certain issues; for example, the budget, ordinance changes, etc.

During the public hearing, the mayor will give a brief explanation of the issue being considered. The mayor will then ask if there are members of the audience who wish to address board regarding the issue under consideration.

Speakers are limited to three minutes each and are asked to please adhere to the following procedure:

  1. Secure the recognition of the mayor and approach the podium. State your name and address for the record, and indicate if you are representing a group or organization.

  2. Your comments should be addressed to the board as a whole, not to individual board members.

  3. Your remarks should concern the issue being considered.

  4. Board policy recognizes the vital necessity of obtaining comments from the public, therefore you are asked to make a concise statement of your opinions and not try to establish a dialogue with board members. This helps prevent lengthy digressions and gives all who desire to speak an opportunity to do so. If you wish to establish a direct dialogue with commissioners, then please direct your questions to them outside of formal board meetings.

  • Individuals – Remarks must be limited to three (3) minutes.

  • Groups – If a group wishes to address the board, a spokesperson should be chosen from the group to address the board. The spokesperson and the total presentation to the board must be limited to no more than ten (10) minutes. Further time may be granted by the board.

PLEASE NOTE: During the public hearing, board members may engage the speaker by asking questions and seeking clarification.


Public Comment**
During the public comment portion of the regular board of commissioners meeting, the mayor will ask if there are members of the audience who wish to address the board on a topic not on the agenda.

Anyone wishing to address the board regarding an issue not on the agenda must register with the town clerk no later than 6:30 p.m. on the evening of the meeting. You may register earlier by contacting the town clerk at 919-435-9413 or dharris@wakeforestnc.gov.

After registering with the town clerk prior to the start of the meeting, you will have an opportunity to address the board during the public comment portion of the meeting.

Speakers are limited to three minutes each and are asked to please adhere to the following procedure:

  1. Secure the recognition of the mayor and approach the podium. State your name and address for the record, and indicate if you are representing a group or organization.

  2. Your comments should be addressed to the board as a whole, not to individual board members.

  3. Your remarks should be limited to the issue you wish to bring before the board.

  4. Board policy recognizes the vital necessity of obtaining comments from the public, therefore you are asked to make a concise statement of your opinions and not try to establish a dialogue with board members. This helps prevent lengthy digressions and gives all who desire to speak an opportunity to do so. If you wish to establish a direct dialogue with commissioners, then please direct your questions to them outside of formal board meetings.

  • Individuals – Remarks must be limited to three (3) minutes.

  • Groups – If a group wishes to address the board, a spokesperson should be chosen from the group to address the board. The spokesperson and the total presentation to the board must be limited to not more than ten (10) minutes. Further time may be granted by the board.

PLEASE NOTE: During the public comment portion of the meeting, the board of commissioners will not engage the speaker in a discussion of the presented information. The board will take the presented information under advisement, but it will not discuss the matter.


When You Speak to the Board of Commissioners

  • Speakers must speak from the lectern in the well of the board chambers. Disabled speakers may request the use of a portable microphone, if they choose.

  • When you begin your remarks, state your name and address for the record.

  • Speak in a normal voice and relax. The board is interested in hearing what you have to say, and will carefully consider your input.

  • Address the board as "Madam Mayor and Members of the board."

  • You must confine your remarks to the topic you signed up to speak about. If you stray into other areas, you may be ruled out of order.

  • If you have materials you wish the board to view or consider, please provide these to the town clerk for distribution to the board.

  • Speakers must refrain from making personal verbal attacks on members of board or other citizens, as well as using vulgar language during remarks.

  • The board may, at its option, recall any speaker during its deliberations on an issue, if there are questions or a need for clarification.


Closed Sessions
Closed sessions are closed meetings that allow the board to discuss certain matters of a sensitive nature that affect the town. Examples of areas that may be discussed in closed session include appointment/employment or dismissal of an employee or officer, land acquisition, and probable or pending litigation involving the town. When a motion is made to adjourn to closed session, only that specific topic can be discussed and no final action may be taken on it during the closed session. After the board has determined that it is no longer necessary to protect the public interest or the privacy of an individual, minutes of closed meetings or sessions are made available to the public.


Addressing the Board Outside Of Meetings
The public is encouraged to communicate their questions and concerns to the board of commissioners. You may do so by directly contacting (either orally or in writing) any board member. In addition, you may also submit general questions and comments to the town by using the "Contact Us" feature on the town's website. Questions and comments will be directed to the appropriate official or staff person who will provide a response generally within 24-48 hours.


Disturbing Meetings
No person shall interrupt, disturb, or disrupt any regular or special meeting or work session of the board of commissioners. Upon direction of the mayor, any such person shall leave the board chambers and town hall.


Failure To Observe Procedures
The board may occasionally deviate from the outlined procedures but failure to strictly observe these rules will not affect the jurisdiction of the board or invalidate any action taken at a meeting that is otherwise held in conformity with the law.


We hope this information has helped make you aware of how you can make your concerns known to the Wake Forest Board of Commissioners. We need and value your input, and hope to provide responsive, caring, cost-effective service in partnership with our community.

For more information, contact Town Clerk Deeda Harris at 919-435-9413 or dharris@wakeforestnc.gov.