UPDATE: Member for Charlestown Jodie Harrison has issued a statement following the death of Matthew Morris, who held the seat from 2003-2011.
"Matthew was a Labor man through and through. He believed that government could improve people's lives, and during his time as an MP and on council he always fought to make our community a strong, healthier, happier place to be," she said.
"Matthew spent his entire working life serving the public, and was a tireless advocate for our community on Lake Macquarie City Council, serving from 1999 to 2003. At the 2003 state election, he was elected to the NSW Parliament. From 2003 until 2011, he represented Charlestown in Macquarie Street, and served as a Parliamentary Secretary.
"I would like to thank him for his service to Charlestown, and offer my condolences to his family."
EARLIER: Lake Macquarie council has paid tribute to former councillor and Charlestown MP Matthew Morris after he passed away at the weekend.
Mayor Kay Fraser opened an extraordinary meeting on Monday night with a tribute to the former Australian Labor Party member.
"Before we begin the meeting, I would just like to advise I've heard very sad news yesterday that a former councillor and former state member Matthew Morris passed away," she said.
"I'd like to acknowledge his wonderful contribution to our community here in Lake Macquarie.
"As a councillor, he worked studiously and also very hard for his community.
"As a state member, he was instrumental in making a number of changes in his electorate of Charlestown.
"I'd like to send out our condolences to his family on behalf of council."
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Mr Morris, who died aged 51, was the son of former federal MP for Shortland Peter Morris - a Transport Minister in the Hawke government.
Matthew Morris succeeded Richard Face as the member for Charlestown at the 2003 state election and was re-elected for a second term in 2007. He lost the seat to Andrew Cornwell in 2011.
Before entering state politics, he was a councillor for a number of years and briefly served as deputy mayor.
Cr Barney Langford recalled having Mr Morris as a work colleague and said his passing was "indeed a very sad occasion".
"I too, would join with you, in acknowledging the contribution he made to public life and the community of Lake Macquarie," he said.