(UPDATE 12 p.m. Friday: The deadline for Democrats to file a replacement candidate is Aug. 23, according to the Pennsylvania Department of State.)
State Rep. Mike Gerber (D-Montgomery), who has served since 2004, will leave his seat at the end of this term, he announced Thursday afternoon.
Gerber, who represents the 148th legislative district, would have been up for re-election in November; the Democratic Party will have the opportunity to replace him on the ballot. The district comprises parts of Lower Merion, Plymouth, Upper Dublin and Whitemarsh and Whitpain townships, as well as the boroughs of Narberth and Conshohocken.
His decision comes following a Wednesday agreement to join on Aug. 20 the Philadelphia-based investment firm Franklin Square Capital Partners as senior vice president of public affairs, according to a press release. Gerber is also leaving the current law firm he works for, Drinker, Biddle and Reath.
"I would have preferred announcing my decision at a time when I was not a candidate," Gerber wrote in the release. "An earlier announcement was not possible, however, because the opportunity to join Franklin Square did not crystallize until a few weeks ago, and I had to delay my considerations while I was engaged in the state budget process."
Gerber's campaign account contained about $60,000 as of the latest report, according to a post on PoliticsPA.org.
Gerber held town hall meetings in and in last December, where he talked about the failings of government and discussed why he voted against the state budget last May.
"Thank you also to those who have voted for me over the years," Gerber wrote in Thursday's press release. "I hope the public service I have provided was everything you expected when you put your trust in me."
The Montgomery County Democratic Committee will recommend a replacement candidate to the state party. County chairman Marcel Groen could not be immediately reached Thursday afternoon for comment on that process. Mark Taylor, chairman of the Democratic Committee of Lower Merion and Narberth, could not be reached for comment Thursday.
The district's Republican candidate, Mike Ludwig, told Patch he learned of Gerber's decision Thursday morning.
"I wish him the best of luck with his new endeavors," Ludwig said, "and I look forward to going forward with my campaign and hopefully representing the people of the 148th District."
Ludwig said he had heard no rumors about possible replacement candidates.