Tuesday, Nov. 5 marked the final session for Salida City Council members Cheryl Brown-Kovacic and Mike Bowers, who made final remarks to the public and their fellow council members. The remaining council also bid farewell to Brown-Kovacic and Bowers.
Their terms expired with the November 2019 election. Bowers, who was term-limited, shared his appreciation for the community of Salida in his final report, “There are some great things happening here in Salida. As I finish up my post here of eight years, I want to tell you something that all of you here know: Salida is a special place.”
He added, “It is that way because of the way it has been handled in the past, and yes, we are encountering some changes. But there are some of the finest people in the world here. I can’t say enough about it. I have put a lot of time into this community and I can’t begin to tell you how proud I am of it and the people in it. It’s to be cherished.”
Bowers went on to share his final remarks as councilman putting a local twist on a John F. Kennedy quote, “As I finish up here, I want to tell the council here, and the future council one thing, and that is to cherish Salida. When you cherish something, you put a lot of thought into it and what is to come in future generations… I look back at one of John F. Kennedy’s remarks, and it’s true of this community. ‘Ask not what your community can do for you, but what you can do for your community.’”
Brown-Kovacic made her final report in addressing the council, “It’s hard to believe. It is the end of a long time. It’s going to be a big change. It was a memorable time that was a little rocky at points, but I have learned a lot. I think the other neat thing about doing this that I have met so many people that I would not have had interactions with otherwise. That’s really been a highlight of being on council.”
“I have had great support; people have helped me through this. I want to thank all of those people. Lots of people have shared their ideas with me, and I used those ideas, in addition to those who had great questions for me,” added Brown-Kovacic. “It helped me think through some of the issues that were before us. In some ways, it’s hard to leave, but it’s a great time to leave. I’m leaving on a high note with things headed in a great direction. The city has solid important goals, and a future council is a great group of committed and competent people.”
Councilman Dan Shore shared in his report, “I’d like to acknowledge both Mike and Cheryl for their contributions, work, sacrifice and selflessness. I am approaching two years, and Mike has over eight [years], and Cheryl has six [years] between serving as a council member and treasurer. My hat is off to both of you. Thank you for your service.”
Councilman Justin Critelli shared his sentiments, “To speak to our departing council members Brown-Kovacic and Bowers. When I came into this, I never thought that I would be a politician, and you guys helped make it and take the edge off, really showing me how it is done. I appreciate both of your guidance as pillars of this community and for being someone, I can look up to and be one day when I grow up.”
Mayor P.T. Wood paid his respects to Brown-Kovacic before adjourning council, “I have to thank both Cheryl and Mike. I got the chance to work with Cheryl on planning commission before the council and now on the council for a number of years, and I have certainly learned a lot about preparation for meetings and asking very hard, pointed questions that really get to the heart of the issue. We are going to miss that, certainly.”
Wood, who presided in a dress shirt and tie, addressed his wearing a tie for Bowers, “I don’t wear a tie for many people, I’ve got to respect the heck out of you to put one on.”
Wood continued, “Mike, thanks for really tying us to the heart of Salida and the folks that have been here a long time. I have really appreciated your friendship. We don’t always agree. At the end of the day, we always laugh, and I think that’s an important part of the community. I promise you we will have tie day a couple of nights a year in your honor.”
At 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 19, the Salida City Council will mingle before their regular meeting to pay special recognition to the work of both council member Brown-Kovacic and Bowers. This will be an opportunity for the community of Salida to greet their new council members and pay respects to those who have served and will continue to serve on the Salida Council.