I was bitterly disappointed by the announcement by the Victorian Government and its roadmap for regional Victoria.
I am fully aware of the health risks that the coronavirus presents, however the very restrictive roadmap presented by the government for regional Victoria is devastating for thousands of regional businesses, many of which have been just holding on for the last six weeks.
I have been pressing the government since June to adopt a targeted and localised approach to restrictions in northern Victoria, in particular the local government areas that have had zero active cases for extended periods.
In my discussions with government in the lead up to debate of the proposed extension to the State of Emergency, I was told definitively that this was part of the planning.
The roadmap presented by the government is extremely underwhelming, to say the least, and a galaxy away from those assurances.
Currently there are 17 local government areas in northern Victoria with not even a single case of the coronavirus.
The regional roadmap is a lost opportunity to allow many businesses the chance to safely trade within their own community.
I will continue to call on the government to urgently reconsider the alternatives that can manage the health risks and provide some economic flexibility and an immediate reopening for businesses in areas where there are no active cases.
Otherwise, we risk this roadmap being a road to ruin.
Member for Northern Victoria