The new Bayside Council will see several familiar faces return with a number of former councillors re-elected in the new council.
As counting is finalised it looks like three Independents will hold the balance of power with Labor holding at least six seats and Liberal five.
It is still too close to call the final seat in the Mascot Ward which could either go to Labor or the Greens.
Labor has polled well across all five wards recording a swing of more than three per cent.
They dominated in the Rockdale Ward and by Monday had secured 40 per cent of the vote giving Bill Saravinovski a comfortable win.
Independent Andrew Tsounis and Liberal candidate Petros Kalligas will both return after serving on the former Rockdale Council.
The result was even higher for Labor in the Port Botany Ward with Labor securing 58 per cent of the vote which should secure them seats for Christina Curry and Scott Morrissey.
The community had been fiercely opposed to the council amalgamation and that showed with the Liberals receiving 22 per cent of the vote giving a seat to Paul Sedrak.
Dr Curry had a mix of emotions after seeing the results come in late on Saturday.
‘’I feel very humbled, excited and grateful to my community for giving me the opportunity to represent them again,’’ she said.
‘’I have been committed to working diligently over the past five years to build a strong connection between our community and Labor values. This combined with a great local team of Scott Morrissey and Jo Jansyn helped us gain the trust and support of the community over a very short campaign.’’
She will be among only a few councillors that hail from the former Botany Bay Council area.
Despite that she was determined to make the newly amalgamated council come together.
‘’There will be many challenges, however I look forward to working with our combined communities and my fellow councillors to ensure the best possible outcomes for the whole Bayside community,’’ she said.
‘’I want to ensure both former councils are represented equally and the needs of the community are met by ensuring a high standard of services, good governance, transparency and improved communication.’’
In the Bexley Ward the Independents have had a strong showing with Liz Barlow returning to council after accounting for 35 per cent of the vote.
Labor’s Joe Awada and Liberal Ron Bezic will also return.
In the Botany Bay Ward it is a closer race between Labor and Liberal.
There is expected to be two fresh faces in Labor’s Ed McDougall and Liberal Vicki Poulos.
Independent James Macdonald is also expected to snag a seat.
In the Mascot Ward former Rockdale Councillor Tarek Ibrahim will return to take a seat on the new council with Labor polling at 45 per cent.
Former Rockdale Councillor Michael Nagi will also return, this time as a Liberal. The third seat is being contested between Labor and the Greens Greta Werner.
The result is not expected to be known until later in the week when postal votes and preferences are finalised.
There was a large amount of informal votes, across all wards with more than 21 per cent of people choosing to leave a blank or invalid voting paper in Port Botany.
Liz Barlow said the low turnout was disappointing.
‘’It’s very sad really. The scrutineers were saying people were just having their names ticked off and then leaving the paper blank.
‘’A lot of them were young people, it was disappointing.’’
After doorknocking hundreds of homes she said people were unaware of most candidates or that there even was an election.
‘’Some areas hadn’t had any leaflets left and there wasn’t many signs. It was strange,’’ she said.
‘’People were telling me that I was the first person to knock on their door. I think that made a big difference that people saw me on the ground.’’
As counting continues in the Bayside Council local election Labor has polled well across all five wards.
In the Rockdale Ward Labor dominated. At the close of counting on Saturday night they had secured 37 per cent of the vote giving Bill Saravinovski a comfortable win.
The Liberals had 25 per cent of the vote closely followed by the Independent team led by former Rockdale councillor Andrew Tsounis.
The result was even higher in the Port Botany Ward with Labor securing 64 per cent of the vote which should secure them two seats.
The community had been fiercely opposed to the council amalgamation and that showed with the Liberals receiving 23 per cent of the vote.
With only around 50 per cent of the vote counted in the Bexley Ward the Independents have had a strong showing with the team led by Liz Barlow accounting for 35 per cent of the vote.
That is only pipped by the Labor team on 39 per cent. The Liberal team are polling at 25 per cent.
With votes still to be counted in the Botany Bay Ward it is a closer race between Labor and Liberal.
The labor team led by Ed McDougall has 38 per cent of the vote closely followed by the Liberal team on 33 per cent.
The Independent team led by James Macdonald has recorded 19 per cent of the vote.
In the Mascot Ward former Rockdale Councillor Tarek Ibrahim will return to take a seat on the new council with Labor polling at 45 per cent at the end of counting on Saturday night.
The Liberals have recorded 29 per cent with the Greens also taking 22 per cent of the vote.
If the result is as the ABC predicted it will be a return to the past as many former councillors are re-elected.
Only in the Botany Bay Ward is their expected to be some fresh faces in Ed McDougall and Vicki Poulos.
According to respected ABC election analyst Antony Green the count for Bayside Council sees the following candidates elected.
- Liz Barlow - Independent
- Joe Awada - Labor
- Ron Bezic – Liberal
BOTANY BAY WARD
- Ed McDougall – Labor
- Vicki Poulos – Liberal
- Tarek Ibrahim – Labor
- Michael Nagi – Liberal
PORT BOTANY WARD
- Christina Curry – Labor
- Scott Morrissey – Labor
- Paul Sedrak – Liberal
- Petros Kalligas – Liberal
- Bill Saravinovski – Labor
Counting continues for the remaining seats on council.
The new merged Bayside Council sees a reduction from 22 to 15 councillors - Rockdale previously having 15 and Botany Bay 7.
As it stands, Labor has six seats on the new council, the Liberals have five and Liz Barlow is the sole Independent.
There are three more seats to be determined – one in Botany Bay Ward, one in Mascot Ward and one in Rockdale Ward.
Three out of the five wards recorded informal votes of more than 20 per cent.
In 2012 Rockdale elected six Liberal, five Labor and four Independent councillors, the first preference votes being Liberal 36.8% and Labor 33.3%, the Liberal Party recording a historically high vote.
Botany Bay returned six Labor Councillors (two uncontested) and a popularly elected Labor Mayor.
The story Election Update | Familiar faces on new Bayside Council first appeared on St George & Sutherland Shire Leader.