With little fanfare, Democratic Treasurer Denise Nappier, announced her re-election campaign Monday in an emailed statement to the media.
Nappier, who has managed the state’s cash since 1999, is the first African-American woman elected to statewide office. A Hartford resident, Nappier was elected to five terms as Hartford City Treasurer before running for statewide office.
“My decision to seek re-election as Treasurer is informed by the belief that the taxpayers will be best served with someone in this position who has the proven experience and track record of results,” Nappier said in a press release.
Nappier touted her accomplishments of more than the past decade.
Some of those she cited include managing the state’s bonding program to achieve savings of $837 million for taxpayers, directing the state’s pension fund investment program as the single largest source of revenue to help meet pension obligations, and putting the Teacher’s Retirement System on solid financial footing with the sale of pension obligation bonds that require the state fully fund its share.
In recent years, Nappier has publicly fought with Republican lawmakers over the transfers made in the state’s common cash pool between operating funds and money for capital projects. Legislation passed forces Nappier to report on a monthly basis if any funds were transferred.
According to the Dec. 2 report, the state’s common cash pool has maintained an average of about $730 million. The last time any money was transferred was in April 2013.
As the state’s chief financial officer, Nappier oversees $52 billion in state funds, including the state employees pension trust fund.
But Republicans have struggled to find a candidate who even comes close to defeating Nappier.
Four years ago Nappier trounced Republican Jeffrey Wright, who called himself Connecticut’s “Cash Cop.” Nappier fended off Wright’s challenge by more than 100,000 votes.
Nappier will participate in the Citizens’ Election Program, which means she will need to raise $75,000 in small contributions under $100 in order to qualify for $750,000 in public funds. In addition to Nappier, State Comptroller Kevin Lembo and Secretary of the State Denise Merrill also have announced their intention to run for re-election.
Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman, and Attorney General George Jepsen are the only Democrats currently in office who have yet to announce their re-election campaigns.