After a decade in office, a state senator representing a large chunk of Western Massachusetts bid farewell to the legislature Monday.
Ben Downing announced earlier this year he would not seek a sixth term. During his final speech to the Senate, he thanked his family, colleagues and constituents.
He said he’s proud of the Senate’s work in a number of areas, including renewable energy as a way to combat climate change.
“We’ve led the nation in energy efficiency five years running,” Downing said. “We’ve increased our solar output 800 times.”
And, in fact, Downing is moving on to a Boston-based solar firm, and will be replaced on Beacon Hill by fellow Democrat Adam Hinds.
Last week, state representatives Ellen Story of Amherst and Ben Swan of Springfield gave their farewell speeches. They’d each served more than two decades.