On Saturday, the Illinois House of Representatives adopted a resolution honoring a fallen National Guardsman, Staff Sgt. Joshua Melton of Breese.  House Joint Resolution 74 (HJR 74) sponsored by State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) passed unanimously in the House of Representatives.

SSG Joshua Melton served his country with pride and distinction as a member of the Illinois Army National Guard, joining a year before his graduation from Central Community High School in Breese. He was on his second deployment after serving in Iraq from December of 2004 to March of 2006 when he was killed while serving in Kandahar Afghanistan on June 19, 2009.

“It’s always a tragedy when we lose a member of the armed forces in combat,” said Rep. Meier.  “We owe our freedom to soldiers like Sgt. Joshua Melton who made the ultimate sacrifice so we can live our lives without the fear of tyranny.  I believe that this resolution is a fitting way to remember this brave soldier who gave his life for this great country.”

HJR 74 now heads to the Senate for approval and will be sponsored by State Senator Kyle McCarter (R-O’Fallon). Effective upon becoming law, the resolution will designate the section of United States Route 50 between the cities of Carlyle and Breese as the SSG Joshua Melton Memorial Highway.
Rep. Meier pictured with Anna Krenz of Hoyelton on
Wednesday, May 27. Anna was Rep. Meier's Page for a Day.

Rep. Meier pictured with the Clark Triplets from Plainfield. Pictured with their grandparents Patsy and Merle Minor, Mikayla, Danielle, and Chandler Clark. Center is Rep. Meier.

Jacob Tourville meets with Rep. Meier on the
House floor as Page for the Day on Friday, May 19th.
Jacob Tourville and his mother Tina pictured
with Rep. Meier outside the Capitol rotunda.
In less than 48 hours, Illinois House Democrats introduced and approved nine budget bills. The Democrat budget plans to spend an extra $4 billion the State of Illinois will not have in the bank when the bills are due.

“When will the Chicago Democrats running the legislature learn how to add and subtract?” said Rep. Charlie Meier. “The Democrats plan to spend $4 billion more than what the State of Illinois has in the bank is absurd. If I ran my family farm this way I would be bankrupt.”

The FY 2016 budget proposed by House and Senate Democrats consist of eighteen budget bills. Illinois’ estimated revenue for Fiscal Year 2016 is $32 billion. However, the Democrat budget plans to spend $36 billion, $4 billion more than Illinois’ estimated revenue for Fiscal Year 2016.

Rep. Meier added, “This out of control spending by the Democrats serve as the poster child for how the state government got into a fiscal mess. It is exactly what is wrong with the thinking coming from our Chicago Democrats. It is very simple, you can’t spend more than you can afford. The budget proposed banks on increasing taxes for hard working individuals and families.”

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On Wednesday the newly appointed Director of the Illinois Department of Human Services delivered a positive message to the Murray Parents Association. Director James Dimas delivered positive news that Murray Center is not on any closure list and is scheduled to remain open.

According to State Rep. Charlie Meier, “It’s music to my ears to hear the new director of DHS go on record to say Murray Center will remain open.  The Murray Parents Association and I look forward to working with the new director to find innovative ways to continue providing the quality of care each resident at Murray deserves. It sure is a breath of fresh air to have a state agency that cares about Murray Center, a place the residents call home.”

The official announcement to keep Murray Center open is positive news for its residents, family, staff and the city of Centralia. The battle to keep Murray Center open began over three years ago on February 22, 2012, when (former) Governor Pat Quinn announced to close the Warren G. Murray Developmental Center.

Since the closure announcement was made, the Murray Parents Association, Rep. John Cavaletto, Rep. Charlie Meier, Senator Kyle McCarter and hundreds of friends and family of Murray Center never gave up the fight to keep the developmental center open.

Rep. Meier added, “the events which have transpired over the last three years should serve as a reminder to all of us that no matter what, don’t give up.  It’s amazing what can happen when you put people first and work together to accomplish what some say can’t happen. The fact that Murray Center will remain open is a blessing for the residents and family of Murray Center.”
The Illinois House of Representatives recently adopted a resolution honoring Cardinals Hall of Famer Albert ‘Red’ Schoendienst for his outstanding achievements and contributions made to Major League Baseball.  The resolution (HR 488) was sponsored by State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville).

According to State Rep. Charlie Meier, “I introduced the resolution to honor Red because he is an Illinois native and we are very proud of his accomplishments. Red was born in Germantown just a few miles down the road from my hometown. Since 2015 marked the 70th year Mr. Schoendienst first wore the uniform and is a 10-time National League All Star, I deemed it was important for Illinois to honor one of its distinguished natives for his accomplishments.”

The resolution adopted by the Illinois House of Representatives states the following;

WHEREAS, The 2015 St. Louis Cardinals baseball season marks the 70th year since Albert “Red” Schoendienst first wore the uniform; and

WHEREAS, For 45 seasons “Red” wore the uniform as a player, coach, and manager; and

WHEREAS, “Red” Schoendienst is a 10-time National League All Star; and

WHEREAS, Albert “Red” Schoendienst was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1989; and

WHEREAS, Schoendienst joined the Cardinals in 1945 to fill in for left fielder Stan Musial, who was serving in the U.S. Army; and

WHEREAS, “Red” Schoendienst batted .278 with 47 RBI and a National League-leading 26 stolen bases. The following year in 1946, Musial returned to the Cardinals, and Schoendienst moved to third base and then shortstop before settling in at second base, leading St. Louis to a World Series victory over the Boston Red Sox; and

WHEREAS, According to the St. Louis Cardinals’ career list, “Red” Schoendienst ranks fourth in at-bats (6,841) and pinch hits (53); fifth in games (1,795), runs (1,025) and hits (1,980); sixth in doubles (352); and seventh in total bases (2,657). He led the N.L. with 200 hits in 1957 and seven times he either led or tied for the league lead in fielding percentage; and

WHEREAS, Schoendienst served as a coach on the 1964 World Championship team and led St. Louis to a World Series victory in 1967 over the Red Sox and another N.L. pennant in 1968 en route to a 12-year tenure as skipper, the longest in franchise history; and

WHEREAS, “Red” Schoendienst is still involved with the St. Louis Cardinals organization as special assistant to the general manager; and

WHEREAS, On Monday, April 13, 2015 “Red” participated in the Cardinals Opening Day festivities where he was honored as a player, coach, and manager; and

WHEREAS, “Red” Schoendienst was born in Germantown, Illinois on February 2, 1923; and

WHEREAS, the State of Illinois is proud to call Albert “Red” Schoendienst a native Illinoisan; and therefore be it

RESOLVED, BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE NINETY-NINTH GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, that we recognize Albert “Red” Schoendienst for his outstanding achievements and contributions he has made to Major League Baseball since 1945; and be it further

Resolved, that a suitable copy of this resolution be presented to Albert “Red” Schoendienst and the St. Louis Cardinals’ organization as a symbol of our respect and esteem.

Rep. Meier pictured with the Brammeier family from Okawville. Pictured from left to right; Diane, Steve, Rep. Meier, Tyler, Alyssa and Senator Dave Luechtefeld.

Students from Emmanuel Lutheran School in Okawville visited with Rep. Charlie Meier & Senator Dave Luechtefeld at the Capitol on Friday, May 15th. 

Rep. Meier enjoys seeing students excited to learn about state government. If you want to visit the Illinois Capitol this spring, please stop by Rep. Meier's office to say hello, he would enjoy seeing you.

Official White House photo by Lawrence Jackson
Rep. Meier's constituent U.S. Naval Academy Midshipmen Luke Foppe, the son of Bill & Denise Foppe of Breese, IL was recognized by President Obama alongside his colleagues earlier this month.

Luke is also the nephew of Diane Rakers, from Rep. Meier's staff.

The official blog of the U.S. Naval Academy "the Trident" posted the following story about the Midshipmen's trip to the White House:

U.S. Naval Academy (USNA) Midshipmen traveled to the White House May 7 to be recognized by President Obama for winning the 15th annual Cyber Defense Exercise (CDX) in April.

Midshipmen met with President Obama in the Diplomatic Room to be congratulated on their success and later met members of the National Security Council to discuss matters relating to cyber security.

“The midshipmen were ecstatic and excited to have had the opportunity to be recognized for their accomplishment,” said Capt. Paul J. Tortora, USNA Center for Cyber Security Studies Director. “The fact that the president is highlighting this for the first time in the 10 year competition’s history is great for the program, the midshipmen, and the Naval Academy.”

CDX is a cyber-security exercise in which students from service academies design and build computer networks and defend them against intrusions by the National Security Agency/Central Security Services (NSA/CSS).

This year, a core team of 20 midshipmen triumphed over teams from the U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Air Force Academy, U.S. Coast Guard Academy, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, Air Force Institute of Technology and Royal Military College of Canada. This is the first time in 5 years that the Naval Academy has won the event.

“This was a fantastic opportunity to recognize these talented Midshipmen for winning our nation’s top exercise in Cyber Defense,” said VADM Ted Carter, USNA Superintendent, who was present at the White House for the meeting.  “Our efforts in cyber education, training and competition continue to stand out and confirm the U.S. Naval Academy's role as a leader in Cyber Education.

For the full story click here.
Illinois State Representative Charlie Meier (R-Okawville) was recently inducted into the Illinois Jaycee Hall of Fame. Rep. Meier became the 30th member to join the Hall of Fame on the 100th Anniversary of the Jaycees. “I want to thank the Jaycees Senate, the Illinois Jaycees, and the Jaycee Charitable Foundation Board for endorsing me into the honorable hall of fame,” said Rep. Meier.
Photo taken after Rep. Meier was inducted into the Illinois Jaycee Hall of Fame. Pictured from left to right is Marilee Roethemeyer (sister), Sam Roethemeyer (brother in-law), Linda Knolhoff (sister), Charlie Meier, Cindy Gross (girlfriend), and Dr. Josh Knolhoff (nephew).

“The Jaycees taught me leadership. Jaycees taught me how to conduct a meeting, the importance of volunteerism in the community, and gave me the training I needed that helped me move forward and become a State Representative.”

Charlie Meier joined the Addieville Jaycees in 1979. He served as local president in 1982, district director in 1983 and 1987 and was recognized both times as the outstanding district director, region director in 1982 and served on the State Jaycees board twice. In 1988 Charlie was recognized as one of the Ten Outstanding Young People in Illinois. For all his Jaycee efforts he was awarded a Senatorship and he served on the Senate Board in 2009. In 1991 he was inducted into the Illinois Jaycees recruiter Hall of Fame. Rep. Meier was inducted to the Jaycee Hall of Fame for his decades of volunteerism and public service.

Charlie’s volunteerism began in high school, Charlie was instrumental in restarting the local AG and FFA program at Okawville High School from which he graduated in in 1977. He is a life member of St. Peters U.C.C. and has served on numerous church committees as well as teaching Sunday School. Meier began his public service on the Washington County Board having served on the Legislative, Sherriff, Highway, and Assessment and Animal Control committees. Including Meier’s service on the Southwestern Illinois RC and D, and his service as vice-chairman of the of B.C.M.W. serving Bond, Clinton, Marion, and Washington Counties. In addition, Meier never gave up fighting to Save Murray Center in Centralia, as it stands Murray Center will remain open.

Charlie Meier became the 6th legislator to be inducted into the Jaycee Hall of Fame. His predecessors include State Reps. Bill Black, John Doody, State Senator Frank Watson, Senator John Davidson and U.S. Senator Roland Burris.