JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - The longest-serving member of the Jackson City Council is off the job, possibly for the rest of the year.
A spokeswoman for Councilman Kenneth Stokes said he has a medical condition, and his doctor has told him he needs to take some time off. She says he expects to be out for the next three to six months. She did not say what the medical condition is, but Stokes told a radio audience on Sunday that he has been diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy, a condition that can affect facial muscles.
Stokes was first elected to the council in 1989. He has represented Ward 3 ever since, except for one term as a Hinds County Supervisor from 2012 to 2015.
Stokes’ wife, Larita, replaced him on the council until he returned. She is now a Hinds County judge.
City Council President Virgi Lindsay says there is no provision for proxy voting by absent members, so any vote that results in a 3-to-3 tie among the other council members will be considered failed. The Jackson form of government does not allow for a tie-breaking vote by the mayor.