NASHVILLE (AP) – Democratic State Rep. Charles Curtiss has stepped down after serving as a Tennessee lawmaker for 19 years.
The Chattanooga Times Free Press reports he officially resigned on New Year's Day.
He was first elected in 1994 and has served stints as chairman of the Commerce Committee and the Legislature's Fiscal Review Committee.
He announced in October that he wouldn't run again for his District 43 seat that includes Grundy, Warren and White counties. He said at the time he wanted to give candidates considering the seat time to plan a campaign.
He said he decided to resign after being hired as executive director of the Tennessee County Commissioners Association. The organization lobbies lawmakers on behalf of counties.
Curtiss told the newspaper on Monday that resigning his seat was a condition of being named to the post.
"Legally I didn't have to resign," Curtiss said. "But when they (county officials) finally got through all the hoops and they finally decided to hire me, that was one of the conditions. They said 'we didn't want there to be any perceptions that anything is going on wrong so we want you to not be in the Legislature when you take office.'"
He said he did some "soul searching" and agreed to the terms.
By law, he will have to wait a year before he can begin lobbying lawmakers.
Information from: Chattanooga Times Free Press, www.timesfreepress.com
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