State Rep. Ed Lindsey of Buckhead is resigning his seat in the Legislature six months early to take an appointment to a joint study committee on transportation funding.

“Our transportation challenge in the 21st Century is to avoid drowning in the commuter quagmire created by our earlier success and emerge with solutions that will take us to even greater heights on the national and international stage,” Lindsey said July 2 in the email to constituents in which he announced his  resignation.

“I wish to emphasize that under Georgia law my resignation will not require a special election since we have completed the second regular session of the 2013-14 term and I am not standing for re-election this November,” he said in the email.

“I am pleased that I had the opportunity to complete my service to my constituents through this term’s regular sessions and it was important to me that my action today not triggers the cost of a special election.”

Lindsey said Rep. Joe Wilkinson (R-Atlanta), who also represents a portion of Buckhead, would provide any constituent services residents of the 54th District might need until a new House member is elected.

House Speaker David Ralston said in a press release that Lindsey would join the Joint Study Committee on Critical Transportation Infrastructure Funding.

“I commend Edward for his decade of service to House District 54,” Ralston said in the release. “I am grateful he is willing to continue his service to the state in this new role. The work of this committee will shape how we address transportation funding as a state, and I know his efforts will make an important difference in the work of this committee.”

Lindsey did not seek re-election to the District 54 House seat in order to run for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. He ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination to the congressional seat representing the 11th District.

Attorney Beth Beskin and John McCloskey are in a July 22 runoff for the Republican nomination for the District 54 House seat being vacated by Lindsey.

McCloskey has announced he suspended his campaign, but both names will appear on the runoff ballot as neither received more than half the votes in the May 20 primary election. Four candidates sought the seat in the May 20 election.

The primary runoff winner will face Democrat Bob Gibeling in the fall.

Independent candidate Bill Bozarth also seeks a spot on the November ballot for the District 54 seat. Bozarth said he turned petitions supporting his candidacy over to county election officials last week.

Joe Earle is Editor-at-Large. He has more than 30-years of experience with daily newspapers, including the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and was Managing Editor of Reporter Newspapers.

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