... Effective May 10. West Seattle blog has the scoop. From Gallagher's resignation letter:

...Clearly, the subject of long-term sustainability is one that must be addressed in the next year. Voter approval of several recent levys shows the tremendous public support for parks and recreation, unfortunately operation and maintenance resources have not been provided to the department to match the public’s request. The result is a park and recreation system that is now unsustainable and in jeopardy of collapse.

Unfortunately, the press has decided to focus on other matters and not the real story, the upcoming collapse of a truly great park system. With the reality of the direction of the focus, I believe it is best for me to step aside to allow the press to concentrate on the real issue at hand, the sustainability of the park and recreation system for the City of Seattle.

Just one point of clarification, Tim: less than a month ago, members of the press tried to cover the "real story" while the parks department did frantic damage control on rumors of being hit hard by budget cuts.

As for his resignation, wide speculation is that Gallagher has his eye on the vacant directorship at King County’s Department of Natural Resources and Parks, a department with an operating budget of roughly $500 million last year (versus Seattle Parks and Recreation's operating budget of $131 million).

UPDATE: Frank Abe, spokesman for King County Executive Dow Constantine, says that Gallagher "is not a candidate for a position with the county."