Following the twice-delayed local council election last December 5, the City of Parramatta is now in the hands of a Labor-Greens majority. Labor councilors Donna Davis and Sameer Pandey were elected Mayor and Deputy Mayor respectively at the first council meeting on January 10.
The Liberal Party refused to endorse candidates for the election, due to an internal faction fight. This made for a unique contest.
Greens councilor Phil Bradley was re-elected in the Parramatta ward. Progressive independent Kellie Darley was elected in the Dundas ward.
Socialist Alliance activists Susan Price and Douglas Hawthorne teamed up with local independent activist Katrina James to stand in the Rosehill Ward, winning 4.6% of the vote.
Price told Green Left that Parramatta Council had been dominated by pro-developer interests but that activists are “hopeful” the new Labor, Greens and independent council “will listen to the concerns about inappropriate development, parks and heritage protection, climate change and social needs such as housing”.
“Residents are still angry over the NSW state government’s destruction of the historic Willow Grove to make way for the new Powerhouse Museum.
“We need a fighting council, one that’s willing to stand up to the government and big developer bullying on major developments,” Price said.