THE State Administrative Council (SAT) has ordered Bayswater Council to pay more than $112,000 to applicants of a Collier Road concrete batching plant saying they acted “unreasonably in refusing the design”.
The final hearings between applicants Ransberg and the City of Bayswater were in April. The SAT delivered its decision, which includes the stipulation that the council pay $112,772.73 to Ransberg, last month.
The SAT said the City “acted unreasonably in refusing the design” at the time of its reconsideration in September 2015.
The decision comes after seven years of council and community opposition to the batching plant on 277-279, Lot 2, Collier Road in Bayswater.
In 2016, the plant was conditionally approved by the SAT, following Ransberg’s amended proposal that addressed noise, dust and design concerns.
Council sought legal advice and was advised that the decision could only be appealed on a question of law and that an appeal to the Supreme Court was highly unlikely to succeed.
Mayor Barry McKenna said the award of costs was disappointing.
“Council will abide by that decision, but we felt that we genuinely considered the proposal on its merits and representing the concerns of our community was an important principle for us,” he said.
“With no other avenue to appeal the SAT approval, our role now is to monitor the development to ensure that the conditions imposed by SAT are complied with.”
Cr McKenna said the site did not meet the separation distance requirement from residents of 500m, as it was located 190m from properties on Shalford Road.
“Council regarded the concrete batching plant as a noxious industry, which is a discretionary use under our town planning scheme, and that should have given us the ability to reject this development,” he said.
“The noise generated by trucks, reverse warning alarms, the operation of machinery and use of front end loaders were cited as being a source of disquiet for the community.
“Community safety issues relating to the potential for conflict between pedestrians and vehicles using the plant, including large trucks, were also of concern.”
Bayswater resident Barry Kramer, who was involved in the fight against the plant, said residents were “stuck” with the batching plant due to SAT’s overruling of Council and the WA Planning Commission and Environmental Protection Authority’s opposition.
“There is absolutely no right of appeal, we are lucky we have got Council fighting for this because Council has the finances of over 72,000 people,” he said.
A spokeswoman for Attorney General John Quigley said Mr Quigley received correspondence from community members but it was not appropriate to comment on or intervene with SAT matters as the government and judiciary were independent of each other.