JUNEAU (AP) -- Senate President Rick Halford announced Tuesday night he will not seek another term.
''I will not be filing for re-election,'' Halford said. ''I've done my time.''
Speaking from his chair at the front of the Senate, the Chugiak Republican said he would step down after 24 years in the Legislature.
Halford said a new baby boy born to him and his wife Rona has made him want to spend more time with his family.
Halford has been a leading forces in the state's subsistence debate and one of lawmakers instrumental in blocking Alaskans from voting on a proposed state constitutional amendment granting a preference to rural residents. Halford argues that a rural preference discriminates against many Alaskans.
Halford ticked off the names of legislators he had served with and recounted their virtues. At the close of the speech, senators and a packed gallery rose in applause. At times, Halford had difficulty maintaining his composure.
''I consider myself to be the luckiest person that I know of or could imagine and I thank you very much,'' he said.
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