Barbara Meeks

Barbara

Meeks

County commissioners on Wednesday nominated Barbara Meeks to fill an empty spot on the Galveston Central Appraisal District’s board of directors.

The spot was left open by the resignation of Victor Pierson, who in January stepped down citing a conflict of interest created by his position on the board and his role as the CEO of Moody National Bank.

Meeks is the fifth person to be nominated to the appraisal district board. The members of the board of directors will vote to choose one of the nominees to fill the open board seat at a future board meeting.

Each of the 22 taxing entities — which includes cities and school districts — that are served by the appraisal district are allowed to make a nomination to the board.

Also nominated for the position are Thomas Farmer, Scott Brast, Johnny Smecca and John Harris.

The process of choosing a replacement for Pierson differs from the normal election process, in which taxing entities are given a weighted vote on nominees based on their population size.

No such process exists for filling a vacant seat, which means Meeks, who so far has only been nominated by the county, could be chosen over Brast, who has been nominated by nine different entities.

Meeks is a former chairman of the Galveston County Republican Party.

If she were elected to the board she wouldn’t push for any major changes at the appraisal district, she said.

“I will just make the best business-minded decisions that I can, to make sure that everything is fair and equitable,” Meeks said.

The board is in charge of setting the appraisal district’s budget and hiring and firing the chief appraiser. Actual appraisals are completed by the district’s staff, and challenges to appraisals are heard by the district’s appraisal review board.

Commissioners voted 4-0 to nominate Meeks. Precinct 1 Commissioner Darrell Apffel was not present when the vote was taken, but later said he would have voted for Meeks.

John Wayne Ferguson: 409-683-5226; john.ferguson@galvnews.com or on Twitter @johnwferguson.

Senior Reporter

(2) comments

Shawn Byars

Meeks has a long history of helping some on Commissioner's Court get elected (and stay elected) so it is no wonder they are rewarding her for that loyal service. Not long after Judge Henry was first elected in 2010 did it come to light that Meeks and her associate Gary Pearson (a lobbyist) had given the Judge gifts and questionable campaign donations. Shortly thereafter Meeks became the "servicing AFLAC agent" (her words, not mine) for Galveston county. Brazoria County was willing to release the financial records that were requested which showed a similar relationship in that county. Unfortunately Galveston County was not as willing to release the financial information as requested. It was also not surprising to see Commissioner Apffel absent considering she endorsed his runoff campaign and her own campaign debt was paid off in the same time frame. You would have to ask those two how that transaction transpired... you know, go be a real journalist!!!

Ron Shelby

Yep. The AFLAC incident absolutely happened right after new court was sworn in. In fact, at the time, there was a strong discussion about whether it violated current contracts that Galveston County had for employee benefits with another vendor. But in the end, AFLAC joined the benefit line up.

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