(KCEN) -- The mayor of Temple, Bill Jones, III, announced this morning that he will be leaving office this May, a year before his term is set to expire.
Jones released a statement saying he is leaving to spend time on his business interests.
He submitted his official notice to the Temple City Council and the City Secretary today.
Jones said he will stay in office until after elections in May or until a successor is elected if a runoff election is necessary.
In his statement, he said, "It is a privilege to serve in this office with so many wonderful people, including my fellow elected officials, the tremendous City staff and the many volunteers that make this a great community."
He decided to announce that he will be leaving now so that the city can adequately prepare to replace him.
The Temple City Council will call for a special election in conjunction with the regular election on May 11. Filing for the regular election and the special election to replace Jones will begin on January 30.
Jones said, "There are so many good qualified citizens that care a great deal about the City of Temple. I know that we will have a great opportunity to select our next Mayor for the City of Temple."
Jones has been mayor for 11 years.
Below is the full release from Jones:
"Today I announce that I will be leaving office in May 2013 following the May election or when a successor is elected should there be a runoff for the office. The current term of office runs until May of 2014, however, I will be leaving office to spend the time necessary on my business interests. I have today submitted official notice to the Temple City Council and the City Secretary.
Over the past 11 years, I have had a great team of people to assist me in my businesses and in my position as Mayor. This has allowed me to serve as the Mayor of Temple in a way that I believe the position requires. My business interests now require more of my time, which I feel will take away from my ability to serve the citizens of the community and the region in which we live as the Mayor of Temple.
It is a privilege to serve in this office with so many wonderful people, including my fellow elected officials, the tremendous City staff and the many volunteers that make this a great community. While I will continue to serve until a new Mayor is elected in May, I feel that it is a good time to make the announcement to give the community adequate time to decide who may wish to run for this great office. Much has been completed since I have been in office. I accomplished the objectives that were the reason that I originally decided to run for the position, and with the help of others, we accomplished so much more. I will miss serving the community, but I need to spend time on my business to develop the future for those that depend on the success of the companies. It is a good time to turn over the reins.
My announcement today will cause a special election to be called by the Temple City Council that will be held in conjunction with the regular election on Saturday, May 11. Filing for the May regular election and the pending special election for the office of Mayor will begin on January 30. There are so many good qualified citizens that care a great deal about the City of Temple. I know that we will have a great opportunity to select our next Mayor for the City of Temple. The one thing that still surprises me today, as it did shortly after I took office, is how much I enjoy the job."