Baton Rouge state Rep. Erich Ponti on Friday said he is resigning his state House seat effective immediately.

Ponti previously said he was not running for re-election this fall.

But in a letter to House Speaker Chuck Kleckley, Ponti said he has an opportunity to be executive director of the Louisiana Asphalt Pavement Association.

He said the employment could pose a possible conflict with his remaining months in the House.

Ponti said he has been advised that an immediate resignation was the best course of action.

“To avoid even the suggestion or possibility of conflicts, I am tendering my resignation from the Louisiana House of Representatives effective immediately. I have enjoyed serving the citizens of District 69 and working in the Louisiana House of Representatives and I hope that during my tenure I was able to make a positive difference in the state of Louisiana,” Ponti wrote.

Ponti, a Republican, is chairman of the House Commerce Committee. He represents the south Baton Rouge-based House District 69. He was nearing the end of a second term.

House Clerk Butch Speer said a special election for the seat will be held this fall at the same time as the election for a full new term that begins in January 2016.

Ponti said his legislative office will remain open and staffed through the end of the year. His legislative assistant will be there to handle the day-to-day operation of the office.

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