State Rep. Fred Costello and volunteer Ron Nowviskie were invited to Mayor Ed Kelley's State of the City speech Sept. 26 to be surprised with civic-engagement awards.
BY MATT MENCARINI | STAFF WRITER
During his State of the City speech Sept. 26, Mayor Ed Kelley surprised two Ormond Beach residents with awards for their contributions to the city.
State Rep. and former Ormond Beach Mayor Fred Costello, along with volunteer Ron Nowviskie, were called to the stage toward the end of Kelley's speech and presented with the Mayor’s Award for Civic Engagement, a recognition created specifically for this event.
“I think everyone knows Mayor Fred,” Kelley said, after handing the award to Costello. “They used to call him Mayor Fred in the statehouse. Since the late '70s, early '80s, Fred has continually served the the city of Ormond Beach by volunteering to serve on planning boards, development review boards, as well as Volusia County boards and commissions.”
Costello served as an Ormond Beach City Commissioner for three years and as the city’s mayor for eight years. In 2010, he was elected to the Florida House of Representatives.
“I like surprises,” Costello said. “Let me just say that it’s been an honor, sincere, a real honor, total honor, to be a part of this community for 35 years now. And I live here. My kids live here. We have some grandchildren that live here. This is where we choose to stay, because we love it.”
Nowviskie has served as a board member or chairman for numerous charity and community groups, in addition to being involved with the Knights of Columbus for more than 30 years.
“I’m sure everyone has come into contact with this man at some point,” Kelley said of Nowviskie. “If you haven’t, it’s probably your fault for not being somewhere.”
Recently, Nowviskie was involved with a Knights of Columbus program that provided grants to five local schools, for students with special needs. The program raised $4,725 by setting up Tootsie Rolls bowls with donation jars at area stores and churches.
“I’m very honored to receive this,” Nowviskie said. “I look around the room and there’s so many people who do so much more than I’ve done. I’m very very appreciative of this.”
Mayor announces health challenge
Mayor Kelley also announced the launch of a fitness initiative at the luncheon.
Including a cash-prize winner, the Mayor’s Health & Fitness Challenge will run from Jan. 5 to April 6 and be open to residents of Ormond Beach or people working in the city.
For a $25 registration fee, participants will receive blood pressure, body-mass index, body fat percentage, glucose and cholesterol measurements, as well as a t-shirt.
The challenge schedule includes Mayor’s Mile runs on Oct. 13, Nov. 10 and Dec. 8 at locations throughout Ormond Beach.
There will be a health fair and fitness screening Jan. 5, at Rockefeller Gardens, and Jan. 6 will kick off the 12-week challenge.
Call 676-3323, or visit www.OrmondBeach.org.
State of the City
In his State of the City speech, Mayor Ed Kelley highlighted the importance of community partnerships in order to keep government small and taxes low.
“All of us depend on partnerships,” Kelley said. “You can’t do anything by yourself. You can’t live in a vacuum. And we’ve been very blessed.”
Kelley said a partnership with the National League of Cities saved residents over $77,000 on prescriptions last year. In volunteer hours, he estimates about 15,000 hours were donated by residents, as well, an amount valued at about $200,000.
Since 2008, the city’s taxable value has decreased $1.3 billion and the property tax revenue has decreased $1.6 million, he added. So community service is key -- especially since city government has shrunk by 15% since 2007.