THE chances of the three-month NSW-Victoria border closure ending in the short-term have been dashed with fresh coronavirus outbreaks in the two states.
The NSW government will press ahead with an easing of restrictions on Friday which will allow more people to attend Albury pubs, clubs, restaurants and cafes in outdoor areas.
But an even bigger step due to be announced on Wednesday was put on hold.
It follows the reporting of 11 new cases of locally acquired coronavirus with nine connected to a Sydney suburban medical clinic.
"Our state is on the verge of being where it was when we had the first seeding incident from Victoria," NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said.
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But on the same day the Albury-Wodonga Health region recorded 90 days without a coronavirus case, Shepparton recorded three of the seven fresh cases reported in Victoria.
Shepparton was added to the border region travel zone last month last month by NSW Health.
Member for Albury Justin Clancy said the Shepparton case underlined the absolute necessity individuals do the right thing in being COVID safe.
He also described the spread of coronavirus from Melbourne into regional Victoria as a "continuing challenge".
"At a personal level people have to make sure from a COVID perspective they are doing the right thing," he said.
Asked about the border opening, Mr Clancy said: "There is no date I am aware of".
The Border Mail understands top-level discussions around opening up parts of regional NSW and potentially the ACT to residents from regional Victoria had taken place in recent times.
Also, Wodonga Council has confirmed it is in talks with the Victorian government about finding a way to harmonise COVID rules in Albury and Wodonga in a bid to halt the economic damage being done in Wodonga, particularly in the hospitality and accommodation sectors, under its state's present restrictions.