A year after forming an exploratory committee, Rep. Penny Bacchiochi, R-Stafford, declared her candidacy Monday for the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor.

Bacchiochi said she has closed her exploratory committee, which she says has raised $75,000, and will transition to a candidate committee in the next 14 days.

Her goal is to qualify for public financing before the Republican nominating convention May 17.

She needs to raise $75,000 in individual donations of no more than $100 to qualify. An exploratory committee can accept maximum contributions of $375, so not all donations accepted by that committee can be applied to the qualifying amount.

Bacchiochi said she believes she has raised more than $50,000 in qualifying donations.

“While I do not have far to go, the final steps are the hardest,” she said.

Related: A profile of Bacchiochi and her early campaign for LG

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Mark PazniokasCapitol Bureau Chief

Mark is the Capitol Bureau Chief and a co-founder of CT Mirror. He is a frequent contributor to WNPR, a former state politics writer for The Hartford Courant and Journal Inquirer, and contributor for The New York Times.

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