Two different border bubbles are currently in place, dictating movement on both sides of the NSW-Victorian state line.
The Victorian 'border bubble' has been in place since the state declared all of NSW a red zone and closed its border to NSW residents.
On Saturday NSW Health restricted travel from Victoria, imposing stay-at-home orders on any residents (from outside the border bubble) who have been in Victoria since July 17.
Currently the border bubble as defined by the Victoria government extends from Bendigo to Wagga.
However NSW's version of the border bubble stops just after Yerong Creek and Benalla.
The discrepancies have existed for some time, but have been heightened by both states having simultaneous border restrictions in place.
Currently under Victoria's restrictions someone from Wagga is classed as a border bubble resident and can travel to Wodonga without a travel permit, as long as it is for our of the five reasons Victorians can travel during lockdown.
However because NSW Health does not recognise a person from Wagga as a border bubble resident, the resident must complete a declaration form to return to NSW and quarantine for 14 days at home.
NSW cross-border commissioner James McTavish said the NSW system is locality based, while the more-generous, Victorian definition is based on Local Government Areas.
Both he and his Victorian counterpart, Luke Wilson, want to see a single border bubble definition accepted by both states.
"[We] are acutely aware of the issues that this raises, particularly around people having a better understanding of what arrangements apply to them," he said.
"We're keen to see alignments between NSW and Victoria but those decisions are really contingent on the decision makers in either NSW or Victorian health agencies."
The department of health in both NSW and Victoria were contacted for comment. NSW Health did not respond by deadline.
The Victoria Health department did not answer questions about the discrepancies between the states border bubble definitions or whether they were working with their NSW counterparts to resolve the issues. But a spokesman said the arrangements set by the department were in place to allow border residents to continue their daily lives.
Mr McTavish said the border bubble had gained 'substantial accommodation' during border closures, but this was one area where further work was needed.
He said if the Victorian government reviews the border region, as they have indicated they could, an appropriate border region needs to be retained to allow people to access essential goods and services.
THE NSW BORDER BUBBLE:
Search for your address to check whether you're inside the bubble here.
THE VICTORIAN BORDER BUBBLE:
- Alpine Shire Council
- City of Greater Bendigo
- City of Greater Shepparton
- City of Wodonga
- Rural City of Benalla
- Rural City of Horsham
- Rural City of Mildura
- Rural City of Swan Hill
- Rural City of Wangaratta
- Shire of Buloke
- Shire of Campaspe
- Shire of East Gippsland
- Shire of Gannawarra
- Shire of Glenelg
- Shire of Hindmarsh
- Shire of Indigo
- Shire of Loddon
- Shire of Moira
- Shire of Southern Grampians
- Shire of Towong
- Shire of West Wimmera
- Shire of Yarriambiack
* Includes residents of two unincorporated areas - Mount Hotham Alpine Resort and Falls Creek Alpine Resort.
New South Wales
- Balranald Shire
- Bega Valley Shire
- Berrigan Shire
- City of Albury
- City of Broken Hill
- City of Wagga Wagga
- Edward River Council
- Federation Council
- Greater Hume Shire
- Hay Shire
- Lockhart Shire
- Murray River Council
- Murrumbidgee Council
- Snowy Monaro Regional Council
- Snowy Valleys Council
- Wentworth Shire
Note: The Silver City Highway between the Broken Hill and Wentworth Local Government Areas is part of the NSW-Victoria border bubble.