More than a hundred people, including a number of councillors, attended a Land and Environment Court onsite hearing on Monday, March 20.  The hearing continued at the Court in Sydney on the following Tuesday and Wednesday, but was then adjourned until 26 April.

The proposed development consists of a 42 unit hotel and a wedding/function centre, both of which are prohibited in an RU1 zone. The application claims that the development is an eco-tourist resort (permissible in the zone) despite describing it in the application as an “archetypal type of resort hotel”. The application has also been amended by relabelling the function centre as a restaurant (permissible in the zone), whilst at the same time stating that the restaurant may be booked for wedding functions.

The development proposal, which has been active for three years, was last year refused by both Council and the Joint Regional Planning Panel.

If the appeal is upheld and the application is approved, it will set a precedent for developers to gain approval for function centres in zones where the legislation states they are prohibited.