North East mayors say they're unsurprised by the extension of the state lockdown, including regional Victoria, but they are aware of the negative impacts it will have on business and community.
Premier Daniel Andrews yesterday announced Victoria's sixth lockdown would be extended beyond Thursday, but did not give a firm end date.
Wodonga mayor Kev Poulton said while it was not a surprise, it was "still devastating" particularly for businesses.
"Those that have pivoted have pivoted that many times and you're starting to see those that did click and collect close their doors, so that's alarming," Cr Poulton said.
Towong Shire mayor David Wortmann said he'd expected the announcement, given Victoria's rising case numbers over the past few days.
"The writing was on the wall there," he said.
"Once we had the outbreak in Shepparton, it was pretty hard not to lockdown the whole state.
"When it was just Melbourne I could see regional Victoria had an argument not to lockdown, but when it's in regional Victoria it's pretty hard not to lockdown."
Indigo Shire mayor Jenny O'Connor, who has previously supported state lockdowns to control COVID-19 outbreaks, said the news was understandable.
"Of course it's very disappointing to see the numbers going in the wrong direction," she said.
"As a result of that it's understandable that the lockdown is continuing for regional Victoria given what we're seeing in the Shepparton area and how quickly this can spread and put all of the north east at risk."
On Sunday, Victoria reported 773 active COVID-19 cases.
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The mayors, though anticipating the lockdown, did not say it was an easier pill to swallow.
Cr O'Connor said she knew lockdowns had a significant negative consequences on the community.
"We all hate lockdowns," she said.
"There's no wish to be in lockdown, the premier of Victoria does not want to be locking down the state, I as a mayor of Indigo Shire do not want our communities to be in lockdown.
"However, the alternative is higher rates of infection and death, so it's not an option."
Cr Wortmann had similar comments.
"The lockdown are taking huge impact on our communities," he said.
"Especially economically, families homeschooling ... the kids are doing it really tough."
Wodonga-based Victorian Upper House MP Tim Quilty was also not shocked at the continuation.
"I think everyone was expecting it," he said.
"A short, sharp lockdown is nothing of the sort these days.
"Presumably they'll keep regional Victoria locked up until Shepparton is under control."
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