"The big problem is pension reform," said Winters.
Dave Winters has been in office since 1994 and says he was hopeful state leaders would solve the pension debacle this spring, but as the talks went on he began to lose more and more confidence.
"Continually, at every meeting they've had another issue came up," said Winters. "And it got bigger and bigger and heavier and heavier."
Now he's concerned nothing will be done before the end of the year and fears the state will soon be bankrupt. That's why Winters says he's retiring now, to draw attention to the issues.
spent Monday signing letters to 118 of his colleagues in
get serious," said Winters, referring to lawmakers in
But his decision to bow out isn't that big of a surprise to local republican leaders. After the state's new district lines were drawn, Winters had to choose to stay put and represent new people, move to stay with his district, or retire.
"Rather than move into that and away from my childhood home, I decided not to run again," said Winters.
Winters says he's disappointed he couldn't achieve his overall goal of making
And creating new jobs and a vibrant economic community, "we never saw it as being a place to be business friendly," said Winters.
He says he'll look back on his career as being successful and full of good memories.
"When somebody cracked an incredible joke that relieved the tension, those are good memories," said Winters.
Winters says he plans to spend his free time staying in shape and outdoors.
"Who knows where that bike will take me," said Winters.
Winters retirement will take effect Tuesday, he says he hopes to be a voice of experience for lawmakers to come.