The chief of staff to former House Speaker Gordon Fox announced Monday he had stepped down, and he disclosed that Fox did not intend to run for another term even before criminal investigators raided the legislator's office and home last week.
Frank Anzeveno Jr. said in a statement Monday he had planned to leave at the end of the General Assembly's session in June because he has known "for a while" that Fox would not run again.
"In light of recent events at the Statehouse, time has accelerated," Anzeveno said. "I cleaned out my office over the weekend in anticipation that a new speaker needs to bring in his own staff."
Fox, a Providence Democrat, resigned Saturday after raids by state and federal authorities, including the IRS. Officials have not provided details on what the investigation is about or whom it is targeting.
Fox had said publicly as recently as December that he planned to run for re-election this fall and seek another term as speaker in 2015.
Anzeveno is a former state representative who also was chief of staff to Fox's predecessor as speaker, Bill Murphy. He said Fox did not want to announce his decision not to run again "so that the focus would be on the many challenging issues before the House of Representatives."
He added: "I will always respect the House of Representatives and wish them the best in tackling the difficult issues before them."
Majority Leader Nicholas Mattiello, D-Cranston, says he has locked up enough votes to succeed Fox. House Oversight Chairman Michael Marcello, D-Scituate, is challenging Mattiello for the post.