Border Shutdown
Border Shutdown

‘No other way’: Tit-for-tat tensions over border delays

A politician from northern New South Wales has rejected Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk's claim she asked her interstate counterpart the border between the two states to be moved.

Earlier today, Ms Palaszczuk said she'd put forward a plan to move the border checkpoints south to the Tweed River to make it easier to move around but it was rejected.

"I put that to NSW and they rejected it," she told the Today Show when asked about the plan, raised this week by Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate.

"This was right from the very beginning, to make the Tweed river the border so those border communities could go backwards and forwards, and that was rejected."

It comes despite the premier yesterday talking down any suggestions the border could be moved.

But speaking to the ABC this morning, Tweed MP Geoff Provest claims there had been no request from Ms Pasuch communication from Queensland.

"I spoke to Gladys (Berejilkian) this morning and she has not heard from Annastacia (Palaszczuk) at all," Mr Provest said.

The Member for Tweed Geoff Provest says border traffic is paralysing local business. Photo: SCOTT POWICK
The Member for Tweed Geoff Provest says border traffic is paralysing local business. Photo: SCOTT POWICK

This was right from the very beginning to make the Tweed River the border so those border communities could go backwards and forwards and that was rejected," Ms Palaszczuk said.

But Mr Provest claims, "that's falsely misleading".

Mr Provest said he'd written to Ms Palaszczuk "days ago" calling for a locals-only permit to facilitate border movement following 'a massive traffic jam' created by border checks.

"Before they opened (the border) up to the rest of New South Wales … we all had a pass here and basically we were all waved through," Mr Provest said.

He was joined in a plea for action by Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate who yesterday pitched a plan to move the Queensland Border 7km south to the Tweed River.

 

 

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk during Question Time in parliament. Pics Tara Croser.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk during Question Time in parliament. Pics Tara Croser.

 

Mr Provest said stringent border controls had created a congestion calamity for the Tweed, 'to the effect that it may take one to three hours to get through there'.

"We are suffering considerably," Mr Provest told the Courier Mail.

"It's paralysed our business community."

 

Queensland Police stop a NSW registered vehicle at the Miles Street / Ducat Street Street border checkpoint in Coolangatta Queensland for a secondary ID check as traffic backs up to Kennedy Drive in Tweed Heads NSW on Wednesday July 15. Photo Scott Powick Newscorp
Queensland Police stop a NSW registered vehicle at the Miles Street / Ducat Street Street border checkpoint in Coolangatta Queensland for a secondary ID check as traffic backs up to Kennedy Drive in Tweed Heads NSW on Wednesday July 15. Photo Scott Powick Newscorp

"For our ambulances, a normal 10-minute trip can take up to an hour … some of our buses are running two-to-three hours late."

"And it's going to get worse next week because New South Wales goes back to school."

 

26th March 2020 Traffic is seen backed up from New South Wales entering Queensland on the Gold Coast Hwy at Coolangatta. Police roadblocks have been set up designed to stop the spread of COVID-19. Photo: Glenn Hunt / The Australian
26th March 2020 Traffic is seen backed up from New South Wales entering Queensland on the Gold Coast Hwy at Coolangatta. Police roadblocks have been set up designed to stop the spread of COVID-19. Photo: Glenn Hunt / The Australian

Ms Palaszczuk told the Today Show she was 'very happy with the checks that are happening at the border."

"We know how hard it is between the Tweed and the Southern part of the Gold Coast."

"We are trying to make it easier for those border communities … (but) we have to make these checks."

"There's no other way."

Asked to respond to respond to news that border crossings may continue until December and whether there was an easier way to facilitate crossings than checking everyone individually.

"Well, you tell me what that is because this is what the police have put in place,"she said.

"We have been working very closely with Health as well and we have to make these checks.

"I want to keep Queensland as safe as possible so we have to do it.

"There is no other way."

Originally published as 'No other way': Tit-for-tat tensions over border delays


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