Pima County Supervisor Ally Miller, the at-times controversial Republican from District 1, who has spent her tenure attempting to curtail what she called county overspending, announced Monday that she will not seek re-election.
In a Facebook post, Miller, who had previously filed paperwork to seek a third term, said she has "decided that it's time to retire and move on to another phase of my life." She added that she plans to serve out the remainder of her term, which ends Dec. 31, 2020, and that she initially had planned to make the announcement in January.
“Thanks to everyone for all of the support you have given me over these last several years,” Miller wrote. “Now we need to find someone to step up to run for this seat.”
Miller was initially elected in 2012 to represent the district in northern Pima County, which includes Marana and Oro Valley. Her tenure has been marked by an effort to promote transparency with the county's finances, whether it was providing updates on spending through her website, or clashing with her fellow supervisors during the annual budgeting process.
But that stint has also been riled by controversy. In 2016, one of her staffers admitted to running a fake political blog that promoted Miller's work and criticized that of her opponents. One year later, she received heavy backlash after posting she's "sick and tired of being hit for being white" and that she's "WHITE — and proud of it!" hours after the white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, that left one person dead.
She’s also often clashed with long-time Pima County administrator Chuck Huckelberry, who has written dozens of memos critical of Miller and her perceptions of county government, namely spending.
Huckelberry said he “wishes her well in the future,” but added that he spent considerable time correcting her “misconceived agenda.”
Miller’s office did not respond to a call seeking comment earlier Monday.
David Eppihimer, chairman of the Pima County GOP, labeled her departure as a loss for the county taxpayers. He added that his "jaw dropped" when he found out the news, considering she didn't mention her retirement during several conversations he had with her and her staff during recent weeks.
"I had no inkling of that until she made the announcement," Eppihimer said. "She's always been a stalwart of taxpayers and the little guys and fiscal responsibility. … I will certainly miss her."
The announcement leaves Republicans without a candidate for the District 1 seat during next year's election. The only two candidates who have announced they are running for the seat are Democrats Rex Scott and Jeff Farrell, who are both educators.
Eppihimer said "it's too early to even be contemplating" a list of Republican candidates who could replace Miller.
"Certainly we will be thinking about that very shortly," he said. "We'll have to be addressing as soon as we can."