Rep. Sean Paulhus, D-Bath, looks at a board showing the votes of each member during the floor vote for an abortion bill at the State House, in Augusta, Maine, June 27, 2023. Paulhus resigned July 14 to become the register of probate for Sagadahoc County. Credit: Linda Coan O'Kresik / BDN

AUGUSTA, Maine — A Bath lawmaker resigned from the Maine House of Representatives on Friday to become the register of probate for Sagadahoc County.

Rep. Sean Paulhus, D-Bath, had served in the House since 2019, when he won a special election to replace Jennifer DeChant, a fellow Democrat who gave up the seat to take a telecommunications job. Paulhus could have run in 2024 for one additional two-year term.

Paulhus, 37, is a Bath native and served on its City Council for more than a decade. He said he starts the register of probate role Wednesday after Gov. Janet Mills appointed him to the position.

Registers of probate in Maine serve as administrators for a county’s probate court, handling wills, name changes, guardianship matters and other duties. Paulhus succeeds Jean Guzzetti, another Democrat stepping down to run for state Senate in 2024, a probate court official said.

“It just kind of felt like a new step,” Paulhus, who has a wife and three kids, said. “It’s a good fit for the family.”

He listed some of his top legislative accomplishments as crafting bills that have supported food banks, fixed a clerical error to allow for a bond to help build a new Bath Fire Department station and called for the restoration of Maine’s original state flag. After several past attempts failed, Paulhus’ bill to let voters decide the fate of the state flag looks poised to pass this year.

Paulhus said he has not yet heard from any potential candidates to fill his House seat. Under state law, once the governor issues a proclamation declaring a vacancy and ordering a special election, the party committees will meet and set a nomination deadline that must come at least 15 days after the proclamation. The seat could be filled in the November election.

“I think we’ll see who’s interested and kind of go from there,” Paulhus said. “It’s been an honor to serve my hometown and the Legislature.”

Billy Kobin is a politics reporter who joined the Bangor Daily News in 2023. He grew up in Wisconsin and previously worked at The Indianapolis Star and The Courier Journal (Louisville, Ky.) after graduating...