Stephen Meeks

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Stephen Arton Meeks


Arkansas State Representative
In office
2011–2013
Preceded by Eddie Hawkins
Succeeded by Jody Dickinson
Incumbent
Assumed office 
2013
Preceded by Gary Stubblefield

Born October 30, 1970
Trenton, Michigan
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Jennifer Brickey Meeks
Relations David Meeks (brother)
Children Rebecca Meeks
Residence Greenbrier, Faulkner County, Arkansas
Alma mater Florida State College
Occupation Computer technician
Religion Independent Baptist

Military Service
Service/branch United States Army Reserve
Rank Combat engineer and cargo specialist

Stephen Arton Meeks (born October 30, 1970),[1] is a Republican state representative from Greenbrier in Faulkner County in central Arkansas. Since 2013, he has represented District 67, which includes portions of central Faulkner County, including the cities of Greenbrier, Holland, Vilonia, Wooster, and western Conway. From 2011 to 2013, he represented House District 47.[2]

Meeks' younger brother, David Meeks, is a Republican former state representative for House District 70.

Background

Meeks was reared in rural Springhill in Faulkner County, Arkansas.[3] In 1988, he graduated from Greenbrier High School and thereafter relocated to Florida where his father was transferred by an employer.[3]

In 1997, Meeks obtained an Associate of Science degree in Telecommunications Engineering from Florida State College in Jacksonville, Florida, then known as Florida Community College. He then procured an Associate of Arts from the same institution. A former educator, Meeks taught Astronomy from 1997 to 2003 at Florida Community College and Baymeadows Baptist Day School in Jacksonville, simultaneous with his duties at Florida Community College.

While in Jacksonville, Meeks was the president of the Northeast Florida Astronomical Society. A military veteran, he maintains a strong interest in astronomy, space flight, and amateur radio. He earns his livelihood as a computer technologist. Meeks and his wife, the former Jennifer Brickey, a Florida native, are members of Faith Baptist Church, a theologically independent and conservative congregation in Greenbrier.[2] They have one daughter.

From 1987 to 1993, Meeks was a member of the United States Army Reserve. He was a combat engineer and a cargo specialist.[3]

Political life

In 2010, Meeks was elected in House District 47, having unseated the incumbent Democrat Eddie Hawkins, 4,841 votes to 3,921.[4] In 2012, District 47 was reconfigured to include Jackson and White counties. Meeks won his second term in revised District 67 by defeating the Democrat Sam Lane, 8,002 to 3,003.[5] He was unopposed in the 2014 election for his third term.

Meeks serves on these legislative committees: (1) House Revenue and Taxation, (2) House Agriculture, Forestry and Economic Development, and (3) Joint Budget. He is the House Chair of Special Language, a subcommittee of Joint Budget. He is also the chairman of the Advanced Communication and Information Technology Committee.[2]

Representative Meeks in 2013 in District 67 co-sponsored legislation to amend state income tax rates. He voted to place a spending cap on the state budget, but the measure failed in the House by two votes. He was the primary House sponsor of and successfully led the override of a veto of Democratic then Governor Mike Beebe to enact legislation to require a photo identification for casting a ballot in Arkansas. He also voted with the majority to override Beebe's veto of legislation that would ban abortion after twenty weeks of gestation. He further supported related pro-life legislation to ban abortion whenever fetal heartbeat is detected, to forbid the inclusion of abortion in the state insurance exchange, and to make the death of an unborn child a felony in certain cases. He voted to empower university officials to carry weapons for campus safety. He did not vote on a proposal to make the office of prosecuting attorney in Arkansas a nonpartisan position. He supported the bill, signed by Governor Beebe, to permit the sale of up to five hundred gallons per month of pasteurization whole milk directly from the farm to consumers. He also developed legislation to create the most comprehensive light pollution law in the country, aimed at getting state and local governments to use cheaper, more efficient outdoor lighting.[6]

In 2011, Meeks in District 47 co-sponsored legislation that gave religious institutions the freedom to choose if they wanted weapons on their property. He opposed a dress code for public schools. He backed curriculum standards for biblical instruction in public schools. He co-sponsored the Capital Gains Reduction Act. He voted to reduceutility rates on manufacturers as a means of attracting industry to Arkansas. Meeks abstained on the congressional redistricting bill.[6]

Without opposition, Meeks was re-elected to a third term in the House in 2014. He retained his seat again in 2016 and 2018.

References

  1. Stephen Meeks (Arkansas). Mylife.com. Retrieved on November 25, 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Stephen Meeks, R-67. arkansashouse.org. Retrieved on December 31, 2013; material no longer on-line.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 Representative Stephen Meeks. facebook.com. Retrieved on November 25, 2020.
  4. District 47. Ballotpedia.org. Retrieved on November 25, 2020.
  5. District 67. Ballotpedia.org. Retrieved on November 25, 2020.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Stephen Meeks' Voting Records. Project Vote Smart. Retrieved on November 25, 2020.