As of midnight Tuesday, Victorians will be prevented from entering NSW without a permit.
There are 15 Border crossings in the Albury and Benambra electorates stretching from Mulwala in the west to Biggara at the eastern edge of the electorates.
There has been mounting concern over the escalation of COVID cases in Melbourne hotspot suburbs and now spreading across the city. Just today we have seen another 127 cases in Melbourne alone.
The NSW government has acted on the best medical advice that seeks to protect the state and Border communities.
Our communities are co-dependent – students, teachers, shoppers, business owners, tradies, health professionals and workers in a range of industries traverse the Border each day. The economies, health care and support networks of both cities are based on a population extending into the districts of 200,000, not just the 50,000 in Albury or 40,000 in Wodonga.
The permits that are to be issued must recognise these issues and that is why the NSW government has not defined “essential workers”.
Further details are still to emerge however we understand that people seeking a permit will be able to apply online through Service NSW from Tuesday afternoon – service.nsw.gov.au
Comments attributable to Member for Benambra Bill Tilley MLA;
This is the direct result of Daniel Andrews botched hotel quarantine where his arrogance declined the support of the ADF to manage infected travellers.
Our communities have been incredibly disciplined and now we are paying the penalty for Labor’s failures after being COVID-free for more than three months.
What we continue to advocate is that permits allowing people to cross the Border recognise the unique and co-dependent relationship between Albury and Wodonga.
NSW is doing this in good faith but make no mistakes this does not give people a leave pass to travel to Melbourne and then think this permit will let them enter NSW.
Comments attributable to Member for Albury Justin Clancy;
Our communities have been through so much already, and I am under no illusion as to the impact of this new development. It will be challenging.
We understand that regional Victoria is so far relatively free of the virus however without measures around Melbourne we wear the impact for the sake of containing the virus.
We recognise this is going to create hardship and frustration for our communities, but we have to place our faith in the frontline medical teams and contact tracers to drive this down.
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