South Taranaki district mayor Ross Dunlop has announced he will not be standing for re-election at the upcoming October elections.
Dunlop said it had been a privilege to represent his community.
"The time is right for me to stand aside and spend more time with the family and get stuck into those projects I've been putting off," Dunlop said.
"I've dedicated a lot of my time and energy to my community, 21 years as a councillor and 12 years as mayor and now I think it's time to move on to other things."
He said the decision was made easier by the fact that the South Taranaki District Council was in good heart.
This included being in a strong financial position with clear plans for taking the district forward and an effective team of governors and managers.
"The Hawera town centre revitalisation project is well advanced, and we have started the process of developing masterplans for our smaller town centres," Dunlop said.
"Since 2007 the long-term investment fund has grown from $88 million to $145m as well as contributed around $100m towards subsidising rates and funding many community projects."
He also pointed out a growing population and an investigation into the development of an industrial park.
He said STDC has continued to invest in core infrastructure while keeping rate increases to a minimum.
"Our district pathways programme is progressing well, and I look forward to the day when I can cycle from Hawera to New Plymouth on an off-road trail," Dunlop said.
"There really is a lot of momentum and many positive things happening across the district at the moment."
Dunlop also said he was leaving behind a good team of councillors who work well together.
"We have robust discussions, make decisions and move forward without the posturing and politics you see in so many other councils.
"I'd like to thank our elected members, iwi representatives and staff for all the hard work they do on behalf of their community, in particular my deputy mayor, Phil Nixon, who has been a terrific support."