Blacktown council election, 2021

The City of Blacktown covers parts of north-western Sydney, including the Blacktown and Mount Druitt urban centres and the suburbs of Quakers Hill, Kings Langley, Seven Hills, Rooty Hill, Doonside, Shalvey, Whalan, Kellyville Ridge, Schofields and Riverstone.

Blacktown has a population of approximately 374,000 people (as of 2019), which makes it the fifth-largest council in Australia. Until recently, Blacktown was the most populous council in New South Wales, but was overtaken by the new Canterbury-Bankstown Council in 2016.

Wards
Blacktown is divided up into five wards, with each ward electing three councillors.

The five wards are numbered from Ward 1 to Ward 5. The wards are numbered in a clockwise direction, starting with Ward 1 in northern parts of the council.

Ward 1 covers north-eastern parts of the electorate, mostly covering newly-developing suburbs and less developed parts of the council, including the suburbs of Kellyville Ridge, Stanhope Gardens, Parklea and eastern parts of Schofields and Riverstone.

Ward 2 covers eastern areas including Kings Langley, Glenwood, Marayong, Lalor Park and parts of Blacktown, Seven Hills and Quakers Hill.

Ward 3 covers the south-east of the council, including Prospect, Arndell Park, Huntingwood, most of Blacktown and parts of Seven Hills.

Ward 4 covers the south-west of the council, including Mount Druitt, Rooty Hill, Minchinbury, Doonside and Glendenning.

Ward 5 covers the north-west of the council, including Tregear, Shalvey, Whalan and parts of Plumpton and Oakhurst.

Redistribution
Ward 1, in the north-east of the council area, was well over quota so had to shed substantial parts of its territory, which had knock-on effects for every ward in the council.

Ward 1 shed suburbs on the western side of the Richmond railway line to Ward 5, including western parts of Schofields and Riverstone, as well as the remainder of Marsden Park. The suburb of Colebee was moved into Ward 4.

Ward 2 experienced the least change, slightly expanded to the west to take in slightly more of Quakers Hill.

Ward 3 expanded westward all the way to Eastern Creek, taking in Arndell Park, Huntingwood and Bungarribee.

Ward 4 shrunk, losing its eastern edge to wards 2 and 3, but took in parts of Plumpton and Oakhurst from Ward 5 and Colebee from Ward 1.

Ward 5 maintained most of its territory, just losing a small area around Plumpton from Ward 4, but also expanded substantially to take those parts of Ward 1 to the west of the railway line.

Incumbent councillors

Ward 1 Jess Diaz (Liberal) Chris Quilkey (Labor) Moninder Singh (Labor)
Ward 2 Jaymes Diaz (Liberal) Kevin Gillies (Labor)1 Julie Griffiths (Labor)
Ward 3 Susai Benjamin (Labor) Frederick Brillo (Liberal) Kathie Collins (Labor)
Ward 4 Carol Israel (Labor) Linda Santos (Liberal) Vacant (Labor)2
Ward 5 Tony Bleasdale (Labor) Brad Bunting (Labor) Peter Camilleri (Liberal)

1 Kevin Gillies was elected at a by-election on 8 April 2017 after the death of Labor councillor Leo Kelly.
2 Stephen Bali resigned from council in October 2019 after being elected as the state member for Blacktown in 2017.

History
Labor has dominated Blacktown council for decades with the exception of the 2012-2016 term, when their majority was broken.

In 2004, Labor won ten out of fifteen seats. The Liberal Party won the third seat in four wards, with independent Russ Dickens winning the final seat.

Labor managed to hold on to a narrow majority in 2008, holding on to eight of their seats. The Liberal Party won a seat in all five wards. In Ward 1, sitting Liberal councillor Allan Green was deselected, but he was re-elected as an independent. Independent Russ Dickens was also re-elected.

Labor lost its majority on Blacktown council at the 2012 election, retaining seven seats. The Liberal Party gained second seats in two wards, giving them a total of seven seats (including one taken from Allan Green), with Russ Dickens holding the balance of power.

Dickens sided with the Liberal Party in the 2012 mayoral vote, ending a lengthy period of Labor holding the Blacktown mayoralty. The Liberal Party’s Len Robinson was elected mayor, and was re-elected in 2013.

After two years of Liberal mayors, Labor regained the mayoralty in 2014. The election was conducted by secret ballot, and one of the seven Liberal councillors apparently cast their vote for Labor mayoral candidate Stephen Bali, giving him a majority. Bali defeated Liberal candidate Jess Diaz, who was slated to replace his party colleague Robinson.

When the time came to choose a mayor in 2015, Liberal councillor Jacqueline Donaldson decided to quit the Liberal Party. Donaldson supported Bali for a second term as mayor, and was supported by the Labor councillors as deputy mayor.

Labor regained a dominant position at the 2016 election, winning ten out of fifteen seats, with the other five going to the Liberal Party. Dickens and Donaldson both lost their seats running as independents.

Candidate summary
Labor is running a full ticket, with eight out of nine incumbent Labor councillors running for re-election.

The Liberal Party is not running. Two of the five incumbent Liberal councillors are leading independent tickets, with Peter Camilleri moving from Ward 4 to Ward 5.

Parramatta Liberal councillor Bill Tyrrell is running as an independent in Ward 2.

There is a ticket of independent Liberal groups in all five wards running under the banner ‘Blacktown Coalition Team’, supported by Riverstone MP Kevin Conolly.

Another three independent tickets are running, including Allan Green, who is a former councillor who ran for the Liberal Party for the state seat of Blacktown in 2019.

The Greens are running in one ward.

The full candidate list is at the end of this guide.

Assessment
Labor is in a pretty solid position in Blacktown. There would need to be a sizeable swing across at least half of the council to have them lose their majority.

The disappearance of the Liberal Party should solidify Labor’s current majority.

There isn’t much of a third party movement in Blacktown, but independents will surely win seats as Liberal voters look for a new home. I expect at least a couple of Liberals will be elected as independents.

2016 results

PartyVotes%SwingSeats won
Labor 80,17251.75+8.510
Liberal 41,33426.68-11.05
Independents20,36413.14-1.5
Greens 7,8975.10+2.6
Christian Democrats2,6441.71+0.3
Australia First2,5251.63+1.0
Informal10,0866.11

Vote breakdown by ward
The following two tables show the vote in each ward before and after the recent redistribution.

The Labor vote ranged from 63% in Ward 4 to just 43% in Ward 1 at the last election, while the Liberal vote ranged from 21.9% in Ward 3 to almost 40% in Ward 1.

The redistribution didn’t do much to the Labor votes in each ward, although it slightly lowered their vote in Ward 1. Similarly the Liberal vote didn’t budge much.

Labor is in most danger of losing a second seat in Ward 1, but to lose their majority they would need to lose three seats and that would likely require losses in wards 1, 2 and 3, which would be a lot.

Pre-redistribution vote numbers

WardALP %LIB %IND %GRN %
Ward 143.039.617.50.0
Ward 245.926.89.69.4
Ward 349.221.921.47.5
Ward 462.923.912.31.0
Ward 559.519.14.58.3

Post-redistribution vote numbers

WardALP %LIB %Others %GRN %
Ward 142.939.817.30.0
Ward 246.226.817.89.2
Ward 350.121.820.87.2
Ward 461.524.612.51.4
Ward 558.520.313.67.6

Election results at the 2016 City of Blacktown election
Toggle between primary votes for Labor, the Liberal Party and independent candidates.

Candidates – Ward 1

  • A – Labor
    1. Cr Moninder Singh
    2. Cr Christopher Quilkey
    3. Allison Roberts
  • B – Independent Liberal
    1. Cr Jess Diaz
    2. Pradeep Pathi
    3. Goran Risticevic
  • C – Independent (Coalition Team)
    1. Mohit Kumar
    2. Damian Milne
    3. Janine Daher
  • Ungrouped
    • Anil Kumar (Independent)

Candidates – Ward 2

  • A – Independent (Coalition Team)
    1. Michael Stubley
    2. Zoe Macartney
    3. Mahesh Pant
  • B – Greens
    1. Len Hobbs
    2. Kristy Mounsey
    3. Ben Hammond
  • C – Labor
    1. Cr Julie Griffiths
    2. Kushpinder Kaur
    3. Frances Dhedadig Elliott
  • D – Independent Liberal
    1. Cr Bill Tyrrell
    2. Ryan Cosgrove
    3. Kristin Dunlop
  • Ungrouped
    • Kittu Randhawa (Independent)

Candidates – Ward 3

  • A – Independent
    1. Allan Green
    2. Anwar Anwar
    3. Tom McMurray
  • B – Labor
    1. Cr Susai Benjamin
    2. Cr Kathie Collins
    3. Satish Kumar
  • C – Independent (Coalition Team)
    1. Raman Bhalla
    2. Balvinder Ruby
    3. Ghassan Nehme

Candidates – Ward 4

  • A – Independent Liberal
    1. Cr Peter Camilleri
    2. Timothy Signo
    3. Leigh Burns
  • B – Independent (Coalition Team)
    1. Nik Popovic
    2. Cesar Bartolome
    3. Ravinesh Ram
  • C – Labor
    1. Cr Carol Israel
    2. Bob Fitzgerald
    3. Rebel Hanlon

Candidates – Ward 5

  • A – Independent
    1. Livingston Chettipally
    2. Wiltar Jajaw
    3. Mohshin Ali
  • B – Independent
    1. John Hunter
    2. Lisa Gobo
    3. Katarzyna Rettig
  • C – Independent (Coalition Team)
    1. Danilo Peralta
    2. Anastasia Sadovaya
    3. Joe Khalil
  • D – Labor
    1. Cr Tony Bleasdale
    2. Cr Brad Bunting
    3. Dorothy Del Villar
  • Ungrouped
    • Ammar Khan (Independent)

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19 COMMENTS

  1. The results of the Ward 2 by-election in 2017 are interesting in themselves, because of where Liberal voters chose to park their vote when there was no Liberal candidate.

  2. I will be running for the Greens this time rather than Chris Winslow. Please help me to become the first ever Green elected to Blacktown Council. (Len Hobbs).

  3. I am so with you Jean that I decided to run.
    I am running in Ward 5, as part of an INDEPENDANT group of long term residents with NO OTHER POLITICAL allegiance. We are the only independent group running that does not have previous ties to the liberal party – look out for the ‘coalition party’. We are tired of economic rational trumping peoples and the environments wellbeing, and local (LABOUR) government that prioritises ‘future’ residents over current. Love the help to spread the word 🙂

  4. Group C in Ward 1 has the endorsement of the sitting Liberal MP for Riverstone while Group B claims to be Liberal. I am a bit confused, is there an official LP candidate for Ward 1?

  5. There are no official Liberal candidates running in Blacktown. That’s explained in the candidate summary. The term “independent Liberal” refers to sitting Liberal councillors running as independents. There is another group endorsed by a Liberal state MP. I’ve included the extra information so people know more about who they are, but they’re all running as independents.

  6. I live in lalor park which does not get it’s share of council funding, they admitted such at community meeting when challenged about disparity of funding compared to other suburbs where councillors live, ie: kings langley. If you live in lalor park go for a better deal and vote labour out, go for independents….

  7. I live in lalor park (ward 2), which does not get it’s share of council funding, they admitted such at community meeting when challenged about disparity of funding compared to other suburbs where councillors live, ie: kings langley. If you live in lalor park go for a better deal and vote for independents….

  8. I’m with you Lisa Gabo. We need more Independents. Stay away from Labour, Greens, Coalition (with Nationals and Liberals). Our nation is in this mess because of past government.

  9. Excellent analysis. Allan green had used “Green” as group name & sure many green voters voting for him instead of labour. Green party never given a chance to rule. Even if independants (why still have a party) win few, they join good or bad party to vote together. We need to switch everything in council renewables so it boosts jobs & cuts running costs to get ROI long term. “Coal”ition is for donors, not voters. Otherwise, how will 40B$ be wasted as job keeper to corporates (mostly MNC & Offshore tax havens) and no money for pfizer or jobseeker.

  10. I’d like to know who’s the candidate that will fix our mobile reception here in Kellyville Ridge. I can not believe how bad it is here, I can be standing next to my modem and have 1 bar of reception if I’m lucky.
    Why is it so hard to find out what each candidate will do for our community.

  11. Hello

    I am doing a postal vote this time as such I would like to know more details about Anil Kumar the Independent candidate. Would appreciate if you could send me his phone number to speak to him.
    Thanking you.
    Mark Abraham
    Riverstone

  12. The manager Kylie @ Walters Rd primary school Blacktown was refusing to allow unvaccinated people to vote. Not sure how many were turned away so people who were denied should lodge a formal complaint to avoid being fined.

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