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Adrian Weston confident Campaspe Shire and Echuca will bounce back

By Brayden May

CAMPASPE SHIRE mayor Adrian Weston is confident Echuca-Moama will survive the Victorian and NSW border closing.

“We are one community in Echuca-Moama, unfortunately that’s just where the border is,” he said.

“This is going to cause major disruptions to the everyday lives of our residents, but I know we will be able to manage the situation.

“In the past several months, we’ve already adapted our lives to meet the restrictions and I praise the efforts of everyone who has been doing the right thing.

“I’m confident we can continue to do that because we all want to get back to normal as soon as possible.”

With Campaspe Shire having recorded just five cases, with none active, there have been calls to ease restrictions in regional areas such as Echuca.

But Cr Weston insists we still need to do our part.

“I can understand the frustrations that people do have about the situation,” he said.

“We appreciate the unprecedented nature of what is happening COVID wise within Victoria, albeit primarily suburban Melbourne, and understand the concerns of our friends in NSW, so we will of course support the decision.

“This is still a sensitive issue and we need to be making sure that we are doing the right thing.”

Despite Victorians not being allowed to cross the border, Cr Weston said he wasn’t worried about a possible increase of tourists in the Echuca area during the coming weeks.

“Tourism is vital to our towns day-to-day business,” Cr Weston said.

“The economic impact of this decision is at the front of everyone’s mind and if we have visitors that will help to stimulate the local economy.

“We hope any visitors respect the rules are in place and help our region in its fight against the virus which we must respect.”

Cr Weston said the permit system which would allow travel between the two states needed to be facilitated as soon as possible.

“We trust that the arrangements will recognise the twin town aspects of Echuca and Moama, as so many of us cross the border at least daily for work, health, education, shopping; all of those activities that the general restrictions recognise must be accommodated,” he said.

“But we’re still waiting for more information on who will have access to those permits.”

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