17 May 2011 – Randwick Mayor Murray Matson has welcomed the return of planning powers to local government.

“News that major development proposals for the Coogee Bay Hotel and Eastern Suburbs Memorial Park will be returned to Randwick Council for determination is very welcome, “ he said.
“The decision to abolish the controversial Part 3A legislation which enabled developers to bypass local government shows a renewed confidence in the role and ability of local government,” Mayor Matson said.

“The proponents of the Coogee Bay Hotel proposal now need to recognise that Council’s existing building restrictions will be much tighter on them.

Council resolved last year that the site’s existing 12 metre height restriction under its  planning instrument should apply to the site. The heritage aspects would be a paramount issue for councillors as well, he said.

“I suggest that the Coogee Bay Hotel site proponents abandon any proposal they might have had that did not meet Council’s planning controls.

“Local government is well set-up to determine local development. Councils have expert planning staff capable of assessing complex planning proposals and publicly elected councillors who live locally, know the local community and are accountable to the community, “ he said.