PROSPECT — State Rep. Vickie Nardello (D-89) is preparing to run for her tenth term in office.
Nardello said she’s running for another term because there are several pieces of legislation that she is working on and she wants to see through to the end.
She added she’s also running again so that she can help the residents of the 89th House District which covers Prospect, Bethany, a small portion of Cheshire.
“I love working with people in my district. I get many phone calls and love to help my constituents solve their problems,” Nardello said.
Nardello currently serves on the Insurance and Real Estate and Public Health committees. She has been the co-chair of the Energy and Technology Committee since 2009.
She has also been an active member of the Medicaid Managed Care Council since being elected to the legislature in 1994.
According to her biography on the House Democrats of Connecticut website, in 2003 she served as chair of the Quality of Care Subcommittee of the Commission on Hospitals and Health Care. Her work resulted in legislation that created a Quality of Care Advisory Committee in the Department of Public Health.
Throughout her 18 years in office, Nardello said the best of the job has been helping her constituents.
“The best thing is the satisfaction you get from helping an individual with a problem people will never know about. They call and they might have a problem with an insurance company or agency and you are able to do just one thing, get through the bureaucracy and help them,” Nardello said.
However, Nardello knows that she is not always able to make all of her constituents happy. She explained there are often two valid sides to every issue, and she has to come down on one side or the other.
“People will call me and say I want you to vote for this legislation and people will call me and say I want you to vote against this legislation. A group of people will always be disappointed. There is not always a clear consensus on how a district feels about a specific piece of legislation,” Nardello said.
After 18 years in office, though, she has decided on the best way to proceed when it comes to making difficult decisions.
“Over time what I’ve done is I do enough research that I feel comfortable explaining to the individual that is either for or against a specific piece of legislation why I decided to vote a certain way,” Nardello said.
Republican Lezlye Zupkus, a Prospect resident, received the endorsement to challenge Nardello.
Zupkus, a native of Mississippi, has lived in Prospect for 19 years with her husband, Greg, and has two adopted children. She gradated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona, Fla., and is the director of development for the St. Mary’s Hospital Foundation.
Zupkus has served on the Prospect Planning and Zoning Commission and has been a member of the Prospect Republican Town Committee for the past 14 years.
Nardello feels her dedication to her work and the residents of her district is what makes her the best candidate for the position.
“The voters should reelect me because throughout that time I’ve demonstrated a very good work ethic where I am known for reading bills and being thorough. I work with both parties to develop a consensus. I pay particular heed to the constituents in my district and elected officials that contact me on a regular basis,” Nardello said.