Citing overwhelming support from constituents and colleagues, veteran state Rep. Livvy Floren (R-149) has reversed her decision to retire and will seek an eighth term this fall.
Floren's decision to run for another term was the result of a perfect storm of constituent and colleague support. "It was a bunch of things," Floren said. "I had so many phone calls and letters from constituents and colleagues, who said, "Say it isn’t so. What can we do to change your mind?"
The 71-year-old resident whose 149th district includes western and backcountry Greenwich and the northwest corner of Stamford, added, "I just adore being a public servant but I thought, jeepers, people were really tired of looking at me. We had some quality people who I thought would step up to the plate but it didn’t work out for them for their personal and professional lives."
So, Floren added, "I thought I’ll just try to do it again."
Back in the end of January, Floren, who is the assistant Republican leader and ranking member of the legislature's Bonding Sub-Committee, said she believed it was time for new blood to take over the house seat she's held for 14 years.
Floren explained, "Every day is new and different, it’s a people job and I really love that. And the constiutents — it was a theme I heard, they all wanted a level of service and commitment, and my colleagues wanted the bipartisanship and seniority I have."
And given the fact, the Republican minority in the state house will be facing quite the changeover at the end of this session, Floren said she decided to continue the nearly daily commutes to Hartford when the Legislature is in session.
"In our caucus, a lot of people will be stepping down — (House Minority Leader) Larry Cafero (of Norwalk)," Floren said. "Tony Hwang (representing Fairfield and Trumbull) is running for John McKinney's seat. DebraLee Hovey, from Newtown, she’s not running. Toni Boucher (of Wilton) is running for her senate seat. Penny Bacchiochia from Somers and Stafford is running for lieutenant governor."
And Floren added, the Democrats are facing an equal number of changes in their legislative caucuses.
Floren said she hopes to retain her ranking membership on the Bonding Committee, but doesn't have any desire to use her seniority to attain leadership roles. "That would mean my being up there full-time ...you would have to live in Hartford. I can’t do that, I don’t want to do that – no offense Hartford," Floren said with a laugh.
Floren said she would be happy "if everyone who asked me to stay … votes for me."
State Rep. Fred Camillo said Wednesday, " I am delighted that Livvy reconsidered her decision to retire from the Connecticut General Assembly. She is not only a trusted friend and colleague, she is a stabilizing force that would especially be missed next term due to the many retirements that have been announced." The Republican who represents the 151st District, added, "I can also be thankful that I will continue to receive my early morning email reminders from her on all events and legislative happenings!"
Editor's note: This story has been updated to include state Rep. Fred Camillo's comments.