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Qld border will close to people not travelling for work, medical appointments or carrying freight

Photo: 'Essential' travel across Qld border only
Only people who must travel across the Queensland border for work, medical appointments and freight will be allowed to cross, while others will be stopped.

The Queensland border will close to people not travelling for work, medical appointments or carrying freight.

They will be asked not to make the journey as the state government closes the border from midnight on Wednesday to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Border travel will be policed in an RBT-style with officers to determine who needs to cross.

Officials are working with airlines to ensure passengers know what will happen when they arrive in Queensland before they board flights.

Travelling from Tweed to Coolangatta for work is allowed.
"People should stay in their own state," Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said on Tuesday.

"As far as possible, they should be staying in their suburbs and as much as possible staying at home."

Travelling to work, to the supermarket, the pharmacy and the petrol station is classed as essential.

Travel for all other purposes is highly discouraged.

A $4 billion package has also been announced to cover the state's additional health needs and relieve financial pressure on households and businesses.

It includes $1.2 billion to immediately double Queensland's intensive care capacity, triple its emergency department capacity and provide more paramedics.

It will also be used to expand fever clinics on demand and rapidly deploy hundreds of hospital beds if and when they are needed.

Community testing and contact tracing will be extended.

The money will also boost the 13 HEALTH phone service and continue non-urgent elective surgeries where possible.

Households will receive a $200 rebate on their electricity bill to take in the extra power and water usage while people are asked stay home.

Another $300 million will go towards reducing the cost of living for households and further funding for payroll tax relief for businesses.

"These are tough times but unfortunately they are going to get tougher," Treasurer Jackie Trad said.

"But when we come out the other side, and we will, we need for our industries and we need for our businesses to get through this trough period."

It is expected 51,000 Queenslanders were impacted by Monday's decision to shut down non-essential activities.

That figure will rise as further restrictions on movement are announced.

Small, medium and impacted large businesses will get back payroll tax paid over the last two months within the next week.

There will be no payroll tax liability for small and medium businesses for the next three months, followed by a deferral for the rest of the year.

It will also be deferred for the rest of the year for large businesses.

A $500 million program will also be established to help workers who have lost their jobs fill employment shortages in sectors like healthcare, cleaning and agriculture.

Planning is underway to address potential patient overflow at the state's hospitals, with an announcement expected later in the week.

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