NEWBURYPORT — Voters in the First Essex District sent state Rep. Michael Costello, D-Newburyport, back to the Statehouse for another term yesterday in a landslide victory.
Costello beat out Republican opponent Valentino Troyli of Amesbury, winning with 65 percent of the vote, 11,262 to 6,035. This was Troyli's first run for elected office.
Costello won decisively in all three of the district's communities — Newburyport, Amesbury and Salisbury.
Addressing a crowd of his supporters at Michael's Harborside last night, Costello said he's been "blessed with a district that has allowed me to take tough votes and stood by me."
"It was a great margin; I'm really appreciative to the voters," Costello said.
Troyli last night offered his congratulations to Costello.
"The voters have spoken," he said. "I'll be glad to work with Mr. Costello with anything he wants me to work on. The most important thing is the district."
Costello called Troyli "a gentleman throughout the whole race."
Costello, 45, has been the district's state representative for eight years. An Amesbury native, Costello and his family live in Newburyport. He is the chairman of the House Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security.
Costello, an attorney, received his juris doctorate from Suffolk University School of Law in 1996. Prior to running for state representative, Costello was elected as at-large city councilor in Newburyport in 1997 and served for one term.
As he looks ahead to his next term in the House of Representatives, Costello said there are a lot of "projects in the pipeline."
He will continue to focus on projects throughout his district, from addressing flooding problems on Route 1 in Salisbury to beach replenishment to moving the Lower Millyard development forward in Amesbury to the capping of the Crow Lane landfill in Newburyport.
He's excited to have a chance to focus on the renewable energy movement, which the state can take a lead on, Costello said.
"I want to play a role in that," Costello said.
But the upcoming session will have one main focus, he added.
"Next year is going to be all about the budget," he said.
Among Costello's supporters last night was Newburyport Mayor Donna Holaday, who took the day off work yesterday to hold campaign signs.
"I'm very, very pleased that Mike is returning as our state representative," she said. "I'm very pleased with the turnout in Newburyport."