Qld Awaits NSW Response to Moving ‘Border’ to Avert ‘Diabolical’ Border Wait

By AAP
July 19, 2020 Updated: July 19, 2020

NSW could have averted “diabolical” border wait times by approving the Queensland government’s request in March for checkpoints south of the Tweed River, Annastacia Palaszczuk says.

Thousands of locals in border towns like Tweed Heads and Coolangatta have been grappling with the restrictions for more than four months.

But when restrictions were lifted to all outside COVID-19 hotspots in early July, wait times and frustrations grew astronomically, prompting the Queensland premier to revive her Tweed border proposal.

“That was one of the things that we thought of first when we were putting those borders in place, was to have those communities together,” Palaszczuk told reporters on July 20.

“It was not even considered.”

Palaszczuk on Monday will again send a request to her NSW counterpart Gladys Berejiklian for the checkpoints to be within NSW.

“I’m just trying to make it easier for people, but of course, if the NSW government is against it, they’re against it,” she said.

Her plea follows Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate last week wanting the NSW-Queensland border checkpoint at Banora Point to stop “diabolical” wait times.

It comes as the number of active cases in Queensland remains low, while Victoria and NSW are grappling to contain outbreaks.

One new case of the virus was recorded in Queensland overnight, taking the number of active cases to three.

The new case is a cargo ship crew member, who was taken to hospital and is not considered a risk to the public.

There has been no community transmission in the state since early May.

Victorians and anyone who has visited COVID-19 hotspots in NSW are prevented from entering Queensland.

Queensland’s strict border controls have helped keep the infection rate low and the sunshine state is now a safe haven for Melbourne’s AFL clubs as well as the new location for the Super Netball season.

The Super Netball will start on August 1 with matches to be played in Cairns, Townsville, Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast.

Tiffanie Turnbull and Darren Cartwright in Brisbane