Mitch Gillespie, a longtime Republican member of the House, has resigned effective Sunday. He's headed to the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources to become an assistant secretary under the new boss there, John Skvarla of Pinehurst.
Gillespie, who lives in Marion, took the lead on what is termed regulatory reform last session, with a special emphasis on environmental regulations that restrict development. He's been a developer and surveyor, and has received substantial campaign contributions from development and energy interests.
The Asheville Citizen-Times reported Gillespie submitted his letter of resignation on Friday. The General Assembly's website confirms the resignation.
Republican leaders in District 85 will select a replacement, which the new governor will sign off on as a formality.