Camden, it's time to get to know your new councillors Usha Dommaraju, Peter McLean and Russell Zammit

Fresh faces: Usha Dommaraju, Russell Zammit and Peter McLean are Camden's new councillors. Pictures: Supplied
Fresh faces: Usha Dommaraju, Russell Zammit and Peter McLean are Camden's new councillors. Pictures: Supplied

The new year is well under way and this year Camden Council has some new faces.

We asked the region's newest councillors - Usha Dommaraju, Peter McLean and Russell Zammit - some questions about what they hope to achieve in the year ahead.

Peter McLean. Picture: Supplied

Peter McLean. Picture: Supplied

Peter McLean - Independent

1. What are you looking forward to most about your time on council?

"I am really looking at getting a few important policies and projects up that the community has talked to me about. I am also looking forward to listening to the community and being their voice on council."

2. Why did you decide to run for council?

"I believe we need more independents on council as I think the major parties don't always listen to the community and I really feel that I can be that independent voice for the community."

3. How long have you lived in the Camden region, and what do you love about living here?

"I've lived in the Camden area for pretty much my whole life apart from a couple of years. I went to school here - primary school and high school. And what I love most is that we have this semi-rural environment, amazing historic places and now I love that it is becoming a really diverse area."

4. What are some of the things you hope to achieve on council?

"There's a whole heap of things; but if I was to keep it to three, the first thing would be trees and tree management. It's an issue that a lot of locals have raised with me, particularly around a lot of unsuitable trees being planted on council strips and along roadsides. With my environmental background I think have some skills that could be useful to enhance the council's existing tree policy. I will also look at the long-term financial stability of council. What we don't want is ratepayers footing the bill for future maintenance of infrastructure. We don't want huge rate increases like we've seen at other councils across the state. We don't want any huge rate increases in Camden. And the third would simply be to get out and talk to our community more during this term."

5. What are the most important local issues to you?

"The tree side of things is a big part of it, but also protecting our unique heritage - and that includes Indigenous and colonial history. We have an extremely historic area and we need to make sure we protect that. That's important not just from a resident perspective, but also from a tourism perspective as well. There is no where else in greater Sydney that has what Camden has."

6. Do you belong to any political parties? If so, which one?

"No. I do not belong to any political parties."

7. Is there anything else you would like to add?

"I am really keen to meet with, speak with and engage with the Camden community."

Usha Dommaraju. Picture: Supplied

Usha Dommaraju. Picture: Supplied

Usha Dommaraju - Liberal

1. What are you looking forward to most about your time on council?

"Since it is my first time in the office I would like to learn more about council functions and most importantly be accessible to the community listening to their local issues and concerns."

2. Why did you decide to run for council?

"I come from a rural background and with minimal education have accomplished many things as a migrant and as a female entrepreneur. It is time now to reach out to those fellow migrants in the region to ensure that they are resourceful and receive adequate support to be successful in the process of their settlement in the region."

3. How long have you lived in the Camden region, and what do you love about living here?

"I have been living in the Camden Council region for the past five years. What I love about living in Camden is its mixture of cosmopolitan and rural atmosphere. I live on acreage land which makes every day of my life exciting."

4. What are some of the things you hope to achieve on council?

"Small businesses growth, community safety and resilience are some of the things I would like to achieve in the first year of my office."

5. What are the most important local issues to you?

"Community safety is my number one priority, promoting multiculturalism, resilience and supporting small businesses in the region."

6. Do you belong to any political parties? If so, which one?

"Yes, I belong to the Liberal Party of Australia"

7. Is there anything else you would like to add?

"I need the media's cooperation in bringing to the notice of council the issues impacting the local communities."

Russell Zammit. Picture: Supplied

Russell Zammit. Picture: Supplied

Russell Zammit - Liberal

1. What are you looking forward to most about your time on council?

"Having lived in the local area for over 30 years, I look forward to contributing and giving back to see Camden prosper and continue to be the great liveable and family-orientated environment it is today."

2. Why did you decide to run for council?

"I have always had a strong interest in the history of Camden and the importance it has played in our nation's development. This continues to be true today with the Camden LGA being one of the fastest growing regions in NSW. The opportunity to be part of this and work within the community to deliver positive outcomes is a great honor and achievement."

3. How long have you lived in the Camden region, and what do you love about living here?

"I was fortunate to spend the formative years of my childhood growing up in this community. I have made life long friends through local sporting clubs. Now that I have a family of my own, I am even more aware, appreciative and thankful for the unique community and culture that defines Camden township. "

4. What are some of the things you hope to achieve on council?

"The past and present council team have been exemplary of working together to get jobs done. Camden Council has strong economic policies and plans for continued growth and community support. I look forward to contributing to this through community engagement and working committees to continuing delivering the services and support our community is deserving of."

5. What are the most important local issues to you?

"Sustainability for all. Growth is inevitable and is a driver of change, our position in this is to influence and direct change while preserving and reutilising the wonderful resources already present in Camden. Camden town is fortunate to be located on the banks of the Nepean river and its surrounding floodplains that provide Camden with unique 'town and country feel'. Keeping that balance blended with sustainable growth and preserving Camden's identity is important to me."

6. Do you belong to any political parties? If so, which one?

"I am a member of the Camden Liberal branch."

7. Is there anything else you would like to add?

"I am fortunate and privileged to have this role in our community, I would like to thank past and present councillors and the Camden Council team for their warm welcome and professionalism. I look forward to working within this team to deliver results for the community."

This story Camden, it's time to get to know your new councillors first appeared on Camden-Narellan Advertiser.