WHAT ABOUT US? Clarence excluded from border expansion
IT MAY be good news for some in northern NSW, but Clarence Valley Council residents will miss out travelling to Queensland for the foreseeable future.
Queensland premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced from October 1, the border zone would expand to include Byron, Ballina, Lismore, Richmond and Glen Innes council areas.
"Border residents can apply for a border pass and travel around Queensland for any purpose, and Queenslanders can travel to those places as well," her statement reads.
"Thanks to Queensland's strong health response and falling numbers of the virus, we can now take a gradual approach to easing these restrictions."
It has left many wondering why the zone did not include the Clarence Valley, which had its last confirmed coronavirus case in late March, as compared to recent cases in Byron and Ballina.
Member for Page Kevin Hogan lauded the expansion as a win for common sense, but said he would continue to fight for both the Clarence Valley and Coffs Harbour local government areas to be included in the border bubble.
Chief health officer Dr Jeannette Young acknowledged there had been no cases north of Sydney quite a while, especially in these new border areas.
"There have been no cases in those border areas for quite some time … there have been no cases north of Sydney for quite a while," Dr Young said.
"So it is safe to open up. The people that live on that border have a lot more to do with Queensland than they do with NSW.
"We know the difficulties (border closures) have caused those communities."
The Daily Examiner has contacted the Queensland premier's department to explain the reason for the Clarence's exclusion in the latest list.