Statesville’s city council acknowledged Feb. 4 the American Renaissance School as the winner of the 2012 Mayor’s Cup Award.The school was honored for its facade renovation at the site of the original Statesville JCPenney store on South Center Street.The annual award, selected by the Statesville Appearance Commission, is given to the person or organization that has made a significant contribution to improving the appearance of Statesville. The American Renaissance School was selected because of its commitment to improve appearances in downtown Statesville.“Everyone worked together to make this project happen, from the builders to the city working to get plans approved quickly,” said Statesville Mayor Costi Kutteh. “We hope this will be catalyst for more facade improvements downtown.”The facade rehab, which incorporates details from surrounding buildings including the column design, canopy insets and the brick coursing detail, was completed in less than 60 days this past summer at a cost of $67,844. The building, constructed in 1954, was purchased in 1999 by a group of local businessmen and rehabbed inside for the charter school. The school took ownership of the building in 2004, and began looking at ways to improve the façade’s worn and dated look. The impetus for the facade project was the completion of the new downtown streetscape and the fact the school wanted to look as good as the new streetscape. The Mayor’s Cup award was started in 1988. Previous recipients include Save-A-Lot Grocery Store, Jeff Archer of First Flight Bicycle, John and LeAnda Barnard, owner of the Barnard-Lippard building, and Gloria Hager, owner of Gigi’s gifts.Also at the meeting the council:• Approved, as expected, new city regulations that will require that all habitable buildings connect to the city’s public water system and that all new nonresidential buildings and major subdivisions must connect to the city sewer system.• Honored Statesville firefighter Brandon Medina, recipient of the Western N.C. Firefighters Association Firefighter of the Year Award. The association includes 270 fire departments in 31 counties. Medina has been a paid firefighter for the past five years in Statesville and volunteers with the Cool Springs Fire Department.• Announced the appointment of Dennis A. Hutchens as acting fire chief for the Statesville Fire Department. Hutchens, 57, is filling the position left vacant by the retirement of Chief David Bullins. Hutchens has been a Statesville firefighter for 26 years. Bullins is retiring to take a position with Guilford Technical Community College.