Letter: Zupkus will take state in a new direction

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To the editor,

Lezlye Zupkus, Republican candidate for the 89th District House seat, has my vote on Nov. 6. After 18 years in office, state Rep. Vickie Nardello has taken Connecticut in the wrong direction with fiscal, business, and energy policies that have hurt our state’s economy and business climate.

Rep. Nardello’s voting record shows a consistent trend of hurting our state’s economic recovery and job growth. She voted for tax increases (SB 1239) that limit the resources available to many businesses to grow and create jobs by raising state income, sales, and corporate taxes, a record $1.9 billion, while failing to make much needed cuts in government spending. She voted for paid sick leave (SB 913), dealing a setback to the state’s economic recovery by imposing additional labor costs to businesses, making Connecticut the first state in the country to mandate paid sick leave. By voting for a two-stage increase in the state’s minimum wage (HB 5291), she ignored the staggering burden of labor costs, including rising unemployment compensation taxes and higher workers compensation costs.

As co-chair of the legislature’s Energy and Technology committee, Rep. Nardello sponsored a bill that would have increased taxes on Dominion Resources’ Millstone nuclear plant in Waterford by $335 million.  Dominion Resources, which has the capacity to meet 50 percent of the state’s energy needs, claimed that the proposed tax could render the plants too expensive to operate. By proposing this tax, Rep. Nardello is telling a company that is responsible for roughly $1.2 billion annually in economic benefits to our state, and produces the cheapest energy, that it will be penalized for doing business in Connecticut.

During the recent legislative session, key components of the energy bill never made it to the floor for a vote. According to a CT Mirror news article, the situation was caused by dysfunction in the Energy and Technology Committee and the tension between co-chairs Rep. Nardello and Sen. John Fonfara (D-Hartford.) A situation that prompted House Majority Leader J. Brendan Sharkey (D-Hamden) who is expected to become House speaker in January, to say “I think we need to change the dynamic of the committee, so that there is not that dysfunction.”

Connecticut ranks among the worst in the United States for business climate, tax burden, and cost of living. Residential electricity rates and gas prices consistently rank at or near the highest in the nation. Rep. Nardello, and fellow Democrats, aggravated these problems in 2011 by enacting the largest tax hike in state history, increasing taxes and fees by $1.9 billion annually.

Leyzle Zupkus will take Connecticut in a new and better direction to reverse these harmful trends.  Voters within the 89th District should give Leyzle a chance to help us prosper again.

Michael Dreher

Prospect