The future of the previously labor-dominated Blacktown Council hangs in the balance as the count of votes from Saturday’s local government elections continues.
At present, Liberal Party candidates have the majority of votes in three of the five council wards, while the Australian Labor Party has secured 50 per cent or more of the votes so far in wards 4 and 5.
Only two of the 15 places on council are undecided, with seven Labor councillors and six liberal councillors elected to date.
The seven labor councillors are Charlie Lowles and Tony Bleasdale in Ward 5 , Stephen Bali and Edmond Atalla in Ward 4, Susai Benjamin in Ward 3, Leo Kelly in Ward 2, and Alan Pendleton in Ward 1.
The six liberal councillors are Jaqueline Donaldson in Ward 5, Isabelle White in Ward 4, Karlo Siljeg in Ward 3, Len Robinson and Mark Holmes in Ward 2, and Jess Diaz in Ward 1.
The undecided position in Ward 1 is likely to be filled by either Labor candidate Ron Alder or Liberal candidate Walter Smith. The third councillor to be elected in Ward 3 is likely to be either Kathie Collins or Russ Dickens, both independents.
Sitting mayor and Ward 1 councillor Alan Pendleton said he felt the local community had based their votes on problems that council was not responsible for including some road and infrastructure projects.
‘‘I was confident that the Labor majority would hold, but that’s now in the hands of the community,’’ he said.
Ward 1 independent candidate Allan Green said he was concerned that formal votes numbered both above the line and 1 to 3 below it were counted in the informal vote tally.
‘‘This raises extreme concerns about the accuracy of the reported vote count as formal votes have been hidden in the informal count,’’ he said.
‘‘It also has placed enormous stress on candidates as no proper explanation has been given about this approach on the official web site.’’
Cr Pendleton said the practice would not make a difference to the final tally of votes, but gave a skewed result on the Saturday of the election.
The results so far:
A total of 25,789 formal votes and 6,361 informal votes have been counted.
Group A - Liberal Party - 46.27 per cent (11,933 votes)
Group B - Australian Labor Party - 40.13 per cent (10,349 votes)
Group C - Independent - 5.42 per cent (1,398 votes)
Group D - Independent - 8.18 per cent (2,109 votes)
A total of 26,323 formal votes and 4,621 informal votes have been counted.
Group A - Australian Labor Party - 36.66 per cent (9,649 votes)
Group B - Christian Democratic Party - 6.58 per cent (1,732 votes)
Group C - Liberal Party - 45.66 per cent (12,020 votes)
Group D - Independent - 11.10 per cent (2,922 votes)
A total of 23,023 formal votes and 7,075 informal votes have been counted.
Group A - Liberal Party - 34.29 per cent (7,894 votes)
Group B - Greens - 6.42 per cent (1,477 votes)
Group C - Australian Labor Party - 29.50 per cent (6,792 votes)
Group D - Independent - 14.88 per cent (3,425 votes)
Group E - Independent - 14.92 per cent (3,435 votes)
A total of 22,774 formal and 6,903 informal votes have been counted.
Group A - Independent - 11.95 per cent (2,721 votes)
Group B - Liberal Party - 38.19 per cent (8,698 votes)
Group C - Australian Labor Party - 49.86 per cent (11,355 votes)
A total of 21,777 formal and 7,041 informal votes have been counted.
Group A - Australian Labor Party - 58.51 per cent (12,742 votes)
Group B - Australia First Party - 3.37 per cent (734 votes)
Group C - Independent - 5.57 per cent (1,214 votes)
Group D - Liberal Party - 25.76 per cent (5,610 votes)
Group E - Greens - 6.78 per cent (1,477 votes)