Election 2016: Republican Brenda Kupchick, 132nd District

State Rep Brenda Kupchick
State Rep Brenda KupchickContributed photo /Hearst Connecticut Media

FAIRFIELD — The longest tenured member of the town’s state delegation is seeking re-election to her seat representing the 132nd District in the General Assembly.

Republican Brenda Kupchick is seeking her fourth term in the state office, after local involvement that started in 1999 with her first election to the Representative Town Meeting. She is being challenged by Democrat Dru Georgiadis.

“I first ran for local office because I was tired of local politicians ignoring the concerns of my neighbors and friends,” Kupchick said. After founding a group devoted to getting the public’s voice included in education decisions, she said, she turned her attention to the state Legislature. “Seniors, young people and those in between write, call and tell me in person they’re worried, and many are making plans to leave Connecticut,” Kupchick said.

People, she said, are frustrated and don’t like “waste, arrogance or concentrated power in any one person or party.” Kupchick said Democrats in power refuse to acknowledge the state’s mounting budget deficits or agree that government operations need to be restructured. “Simply put, I run because I care,” she said.

For Kupchick, the top issues facing her constituents are jobs and the economy, the state budget and transportation.

“The majority party in the Legislature created an unsteady business environment,” said Kupchick, who with her husband, Peter, owns and operates a small heating and cooling company. “The jobs Connecticut regained after the 2008 recession were mostly lower-paying jobs. Of the 55,000 jobs lost In Connecticut paying more than $80,000 a year, only 8,200 have returned.”

Kupchick said the state needs to promote a tax policy that encourages business investments, jobs, innovation and productivity.

She said the state Legislature’s most important job is to develop and pass responsible budgets. “It is imperative to set fiscal policy that’s sustainable, business-friendly, and can support core government functions like public safety, education, transportation, infrastructure, mental health, protecting our environment, and caring for our seniors and our most vulnerable citizens.” Budgets and policies coming from the Democratic majority, Kupchick said, are “crippling” the state’s ability to attract and keep businesses and jobs, and maintain a robust housing market.

Infrastructure and transportation upgrades are vital to Connecticut's economic competitiveness, according to Kupchick. “Our state’s transportation infrastructure is in desperate need of improvements,” she said. “In Fairfield County, commute times are extremely long due to overcrowded highways and inadequate Metro-North services. We need to prioritize investing in transportation, and once and for all create a true ‘lockbox’ on the Special Transportation Fund that's solely for those investments.”

A lifelong Fairfield resident, Kupchick was the co-founder of One Voice, an education advocacy group, and served on the RTM from 1999 to 2003, when she was elected to the Board of Education. She was a school board member until 2009, and during that time, served as the Board of Ed representative to the Parks & Recreation Commission.

In Hartford, Kupchick serves on the Energy & Technology and Insurance & Real Estate committees and is a ranking member on the Housing Committee.

Her volunteer activities have included the PTA, Pop Warner Football, Little League, Mill River Lab, animal rescue, Operation Hope and the Center for Family Justice.

greilly@ctpost.com; @GreillyPost