Under the Dome

Rep. Tricia Cotham won’t run for re-election

Rep. Tricia Cotham Thursday became the latest North Carolina – and the second from Mecklenburg County – to announce that she won’t run for re-election in 2016.

Cotham, 37, is a Matthews Democrat who came to office in 2007. Since becoming one of the state’s youngest lawmakers nearly a decade ago, she’s gotten married and had two sons, now 5 and 2.

“I just need to be with my family,” she said. “I need them and they need me and it’s just time to move on to the next chapter. I’m excited and really proud of what I’ve done and looking forward to what comes next.”

Cotham is among nearly two dozen lawmakers who’ve announced that they won’t run for re-election. They include Republican Sen. Bob Rucho of Matthews.

Cotham was appointed to the seat in 2007 after being tapped by party leaders to replace former Democratic House Speaker Jim Black, who was caught up in a corruption scandal. Thursday she said she was taking “a pause” from elected office.

“I will always be extremely grateful to the residents of N.C. House District 100 who took a chance on a 28 year-old young woman and allowed me to represent them for almost 10 years,” she said in a statement.

Jim Morrill: 704-358-5059, @jimmorrill