Prince George-Mackenzie will have a new voice in Victoria as Mike Morris is retiring as MLA.
First elected to the position in 2013, and following on a 32-year career in the RCMP, the now 70-year-old Morris said it is time to "dial back" from what can be a demanding job.
"I don't know if I've got the fire in my belly for another four years," he said Monday. "I think I just want to spend a little more time with family, be that granddad that I haven't been as much as I want to be and get out in the wilderness and trap and fish and hunt and do some gardening."
Morris said he will remain MLA until the next election is called but chose to announce his intention to step down now to give others a chance to consider whether they would like to run for the B.C. Liberals in his stead.
"Whoever steps into the role - and I've had a few people approach me already - really needs to understand exactly the demands of the job. How much time is it going to take, what's the travel like, what's your home life like, what's the workload like," Morris said.
The governing NDP has until October 2024 to call an election. If they call a snap election, it will be up to B.C. Liberal leader Kevin Falcon to appoint a candidate but otherwise there will be a vetting process and, if more than one candidate emerges, there will be a nomination race.
Morris lists working to convince Treasury Board to approve construction of the $24-million Salmon River Bridge and the $35-million Parsnip River Bridge as among his most tangible achievements during the time he has been MLA.
While on the governing side of the legislature, Morris was the public safety minister. He counts adding more investigators to the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit and dedicating a Crown counsel to prosecuting gang-involved cases in the Lower Mainland among his successes while in that role.
The longtime outdoor enthusiast said he has also worked hard to raise the importance of the province's biodiversity and ecology as an issue.
"I've always wanted to be a grizzled up old trapper granddad and that runway is getting shorter all the time so I'd better take advantage of it while I can still see it," Morris said.