Chris Bentley annnounces he's quitting politics
Published Friday, February 8, 2013 1:03PM EST
Last Updated Friday, February 8, 2013 7:02PM EST
Chris Bentley announced Friday he is retiring from politics, making him the second cabinet minister in as many days to bid farewell to Queen's Park.
The London West MPP made the announcement at a morning news conference in London, Ont. He thanked the people of his riding, and said he would like to devote more time to his wife and two daughters.
"I have worked every day to justify the trust you’ve placed in me," he said, adding: "Although it’s difficult, it’s time."
Bentley, who is currently energy minister, joins Finance Minister Dwight Duncan, who announced Thursday he would be stepping down from his post. Both officially vacate their seats on Feb. 14.
Former premier Dalton McGuinty appointed Bentley to the energy portfolio in October, 2011.
Bentley's resignation comes amid sweeping change as premier-elect Kathleen Wynne prepares to announce a new cabinet Feb. 11, the same day she is officially sworn in as premier.
It also comes amid lingering controversy over the Liberal government’s decision to cancel gas plants in Oakville and Mississauga.
As energy minister, Bentley took much of the heat directed at the Liberal government over its decision to cancel the two gas plants in Oakville and Mississauga. Bentley was facing a motion of contempt in the legislature, but the bill died when McGuinty prorogued government in October.
Wynne must now call two byelections within the next six months.