Victoria has eased its border restrictions for millions of Sydney residents but is refusing to allow those from 10 local government areas into the state.
Premier Daniel Andrews announced on Monday morning 25 of Sydney’s 35 LGAs would be downgraded to orange zones from red zones as of 6pm tonight.
This will allow those residents and trapped Victorians in those areas to apply for a permit and travel into the state after taking a coronavirus test. They must isolate until a negative test is received.
However anyone from Blacktown City, Burwood, Canada Bay City, Canterbury Bankstown, Cumberland, Inner West, Liverpool City, Fairfield West, Parramatta City and Strathfield council areas remain shut out.
He said the other 25 LGAs were not seeing coronavirus cases and spread of the virus.
Victoria will also reopen to the Blue Mountains and Wollongong, while border communities will now move to green zones.
‘Making it up’: NSW Premier hits out at border restrictions
It comes after NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian hit out at other state premiers for their tight border control.
“I get really frustrated when... other premiers make the stuff up,” she told 2GB.
“If the federal health authorities have deemed there isn't a single place in Australia that's a hot spot, why should any premier determine what is a hot spot and what isn't?”
“We have to go by the science. We have to go by the data.”
Mr Andrews said Ms Berejiklian was “very happy” with his announcement after conversing via text message after she was unable to take his call.
He said the 10 LGAs would be designated red for “not a moment longer than they need to be”.
Victoria recorded its 12th straight day of zero locally acquired cases on Monday following the Black Rock cluster which was linked back to a Sydney outbreak.
Victoria Police Minister Lisa Neville earlier confirmed two initial positive tests involving a nurse and police officer involved in the hotel quarantine program have since been deemed false positives.
Andrews defends Australian Open quarantine program
A tennis player and three staff members have tested positive to COVID-19 in hotel quarantine as health authorities face criticism from some players over claims they have been misled on quarantine requirements.
A total of 72 players are now isolating in their hotel rooms ahead of the Australian Open, which begins on February 8.
Three Australian Open charter flights, from Abu Dhabi, Doha and Los Angeles, have carried passengers who later tested positive.
However Mr Andrews dismissed criticism from some players, insisting they knew what they were getting themselves in for by travelling to Australia and that none of the tennis players will receive "special treatment".
"I know that there's been a bit of chatter from a number of players about the rules. The rules apply to them as they apply to everybody else, and they were all briefed on that before they came, and that was the condition on which they came," he said.
When pressed on a list of requests issued by Serbian star Novak Djokovic to ease certain aspects of quarantine, Mr Andrews was blunt in his response.
“The answer is no,” he told reporters.
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