Assembly Minority Leader Brian Kolb in a statement Friday said he will resign from the leadership following his drunken driving arrest on New Year’s Eve.
“I have a profound respect for each and every one of my colleagues, and sincerely admire their daily efforts on behalf of constituents and communities in every corner of the state,” Kolb said in the statement. “But I will not allow my own personal challenges to distract from the goals, message, and mission of the Assembly Minority Conference. With a new year and new legislative session ahead, the work of our Conference cannot be undermined or deterred in any way.”
He once again apologized for the incident and said he has “begun the process of seeking professional help in order to heal, learn, and fully address the challenges that I, along with my family, currently face.”
Kolb’s future as leader had been in doubt as GOP conference members planned to meet on Tuesday in Albany ahead of the start of the 2020 legislative session.
Assemblyman Kieran Michael Lalor, a critic of Kolb, called for him to step aside as leader.
Kolb crashed his state-issued vehicle near his home in Canandaigua. The Ontario County Sheriff’s Office said Kolb had a blood alcohol content of more than .08.
He briefly ran for the Republican nomination for governor in 2018 and had held the minority leader post since 2009. Kolb had published a column a week before the DWI arrest warning against the dangers of driving drunk.
“I will be forever grateful for the confidence my colleagues have placed in me for the past 10 years,” he said. “But in my heart, I know that this is the right time for a new leader to step in and advance an agenda that benefits all New Yorkers.”