Gold Coast tourism operators are fuming that the Premier won’t budge on border restrictions for at least another month, saying it will devastate their businesses.
Premier Annastacia Palasczuk confirmed yesterday that New South Wales, the ACT and Victoria will be kept out of the state for at least the month of September, with the Chief Health Officer advising there’s still too much community transmission to risk it.
The decision means a lot of tourism businesses will miss out on southern tourists for the September holiday period, a further hit to their bottom lines.
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Aquaduck Owner Sarah Colgate has told Sunrise it’s just devastating news.
“The spring holidays are really domestic. Lots of people from Melbourne, Sydney, South Australia, and so forth.
“So, it will be devastating. We are already down 77% on last year. So we will basically have no trade, unless it is local people from Gold Coast, Brisbane, South East Queensland that come.
“For tourism, we feel like we have left out of the equation. We employ many Queenslanders and will I don’t know if there are many people who are Queenslanders who have brought COVID back into Queensland.
“We really just need some customers. That is all we are asking for. We need some help and we need some customers,” Ms Colgate said.
While the Premier has again come under fire from leaders in New South Wales over the closures.
NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro says it’s ridiculous that Queensland will let AFL officials into the state, but not residents from northern New South Wales.
“How can you justify officials from Melbourne for an AFL Grand Final announcement and the AFL Grand Final, and the finals themselves, out of the one area that we know that coronavirus has community spread like we have never seen anywhere in this nation and yet that young couple we spoke about last week, other examples of that happen each and every day,” he told The Today Show this morning.
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“So I don’t get it. I don’t understand why the Premier of Queensland can’t see it. Show some heart. Show some ability to understand the impact this is having and understand that that Queensland border is a seamless border.
“Health services are delivered in NSW for Queenslanders and vice versa.
“It has become now a bit of a joke that these borders are becoming a real problem for those communities that live on those borders.
“This is not about just Queensland verse NSW. It is not State of Origin, it is about people,” Mr Barilaro told The Today Show.