Micah Scott Neal (born November 8, 1974) is a businessman and Republican politician from Springdale in Northwest Arkansas. Neal represented part of Springdale in the Arkansas House of Representatives from 2013 until 2017. From 2003 to 2011, he was a justice of the peace on the Washington County quorum court. He pleaded guilty in 2017 to fraud relating to misuse of the state's surplus money.
Neal graduated from Fayetteville Christian School in Fayetteville in Washington County. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Marketing Management from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. Since 1997, he has operated Neal's Café in a landmark pink building in Springdale, a company launched in 1944 by his great-grandparents, Toy and Bertha Neal and later run by his father, Don Neal. He is married to Cindy Neal. He has two sons, Reagan and Bodie Neal and one daughter, London Neal. He is a member of Cross Church, a Southern Baptist congregation in Springdale.
In 2012, Neal won his House seat by defeating Springdale Democrat Inez Yesenia "Yessie" Hernandez, 2,704 votes (63.5 percent) to 1,551 (36.5 percent). He succeeds Charlie Collins who was moved to district 84 by redistricting.
Neal served as the appointed assistant Speaker Pro Tempore to then Speaker Davy Carter. He was vice chairman of the Management Committee and a member of the Arkansas Legislative Council. He also sat on these House committees: (1) Budget, (2) City, County and Local Affairs, (3) Energy, and (4) Judiciary.
In 2013, Neal co-sponsored the proposed spending cap on the state budget, but the bill failed by a two-vote margin in the House. He voted to override the vetoes of Democratic Governor Mike Beebe to enact legislation to require photo identification for casting a ballot in Arkansas and to ban abortion after twenty weeks of gestation. He had co-sponsored both measures. He supported related 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 a fetus a felony in certain cases. He co-sponsored legislation to allow leaders of universities and religious institutions to carry concealed weapons. He voted to reduce the application fee for obtaining a concealed carry permit. Neal voted to prohibit the governor from regulating firearms during an emergency. He voted to prohibit the closing of schools based on a two-year pupil enrollment analysis, but the measure failed in the House. Neal supported the bill, signed by Governor Beebe, to permit the sale of up to five hundred gallons per month of unpasteurized whole milk directly from the farm to consumers. He voted to make the office of prosecuting attorney in Arkansas nonpartisan.
On January 4, 2017, Neal pleaded guilty to conspiring to direct $600,000 in state government funds to Ecclesia College and another non-profit organization in exchange for $38,000 in bribes. He was found guilty and sentenced to one year in home confinement, two years probation, 300 hours of community service and ordered to pay restitution of $200,000.
The plea agreement also singles out the president of the college—Oren Paris III—as being directly involved with the conspiracy. Paris stated that "neither I nor anyone associated with Ecclesia College has ever participated or engaged in any activity to provide money to Mr. Neal or any other legislator in exchange for the receipt of those funds."
Also indicted in the case is former state Senator Jon Woods of Springdale and Randell Shelton, Jr., of Alma in Crawford County, Arkansas.