Fears for beachfront spruce-up

‘As I understand it, he will just make his announcements and there will be limits on saddling any new, larger council with the liabilities and projects of their predecessors,’ Mr Morgan said.

Cottesloe is waiting for WA Planning Commission approval to sell its Nailsworth Street depot for housing, which could result in profit to fund new beach toilets and renovate the reserves in the council’s $14 million plan west of Marine Parade.

‘Our grassed terraces at Cottesloe Beach are already falling down and we’ve got iron rods propping them up,’ Mr Morgan said.

Refurbishing the foreshore became part of the council’s unfinished argument with the State Government about whether draft Local Planning Scheme No.3 could include more than 5-6 storeys on the beachfront of the parade.

Mr Morgan said the council’s foreshore plan would make people realise the state of the beachfront’s public facilities was an issue larger than the high-rise debate.

Mr Simpson’s spokeswoman said Cottesloe and any other council would keep their abilities to budget and spend on any projects after the announcement.

‘They will have complete control over the finances and can spend their money on whatever they like,’ she said.

When meeting Perth’s 30 councils recently, Mr Simpson told mayors and chief executives that commissioners would only be used at the end of merger processes expected to end in 2015, before which councillors represent their communities after they are elected in October.

Mr Simpson has completed financial modelling for the Government’s preferred map of new council borders and will brief MPs on their implications and discuss the plan with Cabinet before an announcement.

He is not commenting on any particular issue held by a council, including Cottesloe’s depot sale.