Alex Rowley has formally resigned as leader of Fife Council - and will quit his post early next month.
His letter of resignation was handed to Steve Grimmond, chief executive, this afternoon after victory in last night’s Cowdenbeath by-election.
Mr Rowley will continue as a councillor until May’s European elections. A by-election will be held in his ward on the same day.
The moves mean Mr Rowley will remain at the helm until work is complete on the administration’s 2014-15 budget.
This afternoon the newly elected MSP met with the leadership of the Labour administration to outline the timetable for his move from Fife House to Holyrood where he will formally take up his new post on Wednesday.
In his resignation letter to the chief exexutive, Mr Rowley said: ‘‘I will remain in charge of the administration whilst bringing to a conclusion the current work on our budget for 2014-15, setting out our response to the review of social work budgets, and the consultations on the school estate.
‘‘These are three major areas of policy I have been overseeing over many months, and it is important to complete these before leaving the post.’’
Mr Rowley said he would not accept any payment as leader or as a councillor now he is an MSP - and he also outlined his plans to stand down from the Council completely.
‘‘It would be my intention to stand down as a councillor for the Lochs ward to allow a by-election to take place on the same day as the European elections which will mean less disruption and cost to the taxpayer.
‘‘I believe this approach is the best way to ensure the effective continuation of Council business until a new leader can be appointed at the next full Council meeting on February 20.’’
An announcement on who succeeds Mr Rowley has yet to be made.
Councillor David Ross, who represents Kirkcaldy North, is the current deupty leader.