STATE OF CONFUSION: How Clarence people almost got into Qld
THE exclusion of the Clarence Valley from Queensland's newly expanded border zone has dominated the news for the past week, with Queensland Health standing strong in the face of community opposition.
So it was with some surprise, that for some Clarence Valley residents, they were able to be issued with a border zone pass on Thursday from the Queensland government site.
People entering addresses in the 2463 postcode started posting their succesful experience with the border zone site on social media, including on The Daily Examiner and member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis' page,
The Daily Examiner has obtained a copy of a border pass that was obtained from the official site with an address of Gulmarrad.
In testing, The Daily Examiner was able to have the site succesfully authorise multiple addresses in the 2463 postcode, including in Gulmarrad, Townsend, Maclean and Ashby.
Addresses in other postcodes in the Clarence, such as 2464 for Yamba and 2460 in Grafton did not allow people through.
While the initial verification of the address works, to obtain the pass, people were still asked to click a box to confirm they were within the Queensland border zone, which provided a link to a list of site that showed only areas of 2463 within Richmond Valley Council were allowed in. There are no townships, or even residences where the 2463 postcode is in the Richmond Valley Council catchment.
The Daily Examiner raised the issue with Queensland Health on Thursday night, and by Friday morning the 2463 addresses that worked the previous night were then not allowed in, as per the border zonedeclaration.
Queensland Health gave an official response to the situation on Friday afternoon, and for those who successfully obtained passes, it's not good news.
"A system issue allowed some residents of postcode 2463 who live outside the border zone to obtain a border zone resident declaration pass (X Pass)," a Queensland Health spokesperson said.
"This issue has since been resolved.
"Only the Richmond Valley local government area section of 2463 falls within the border zone. Other areas of the postcode are outside the border zone.
"The appropriate advice will be provided to people who have obtained an X Pass in error."
In response to what would happen to people who successfully obtained a border pass and had crossed the border before the system was fixed, the spokesperson clarified that the "appropriate advice" would be that they would have to leave Queensland immediately.
The spokeperson said if a person with a pass from the 2463 postcode had not crossed the border, they would be contacted and told they cannot use the passes, although the person whose pass The Daily Examiner had seen had not been contacted by yesterday afternoon.
Queensland regulations state that providing false information on the declaration or entering Queensland unlawfully could result in a $4,003 fine or a notice to appear in court.