Border residents have been separated again by a "Berlin Wall" style barrier put in place by a Victorian government unaware of how border communities interact, according to one MP.
Member for Benambra Bill Tilley said the tightening of border travel rules would turn "good people into law breakers" when the closest cases of COVID-19 to the border were in Melbourne rather than Sydney.
The Liberal MP also dismissed the need for a ring of steel around Sydney which has been repeatedly pushed for by Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews, but ignored by his NSW counterpart Gladys Berejiklian.
"This is the greatest act of political bastardry any government can place on its citizens," Mr Tilley said.
"We can't let Melbourne-based politicians and bureaucrats make decisions to ruin livelihoods and cause huge mental health stress when they have no idea how we live, 300 kilometres away.
"The nearest cases to us are not in Sydney, they are in Melbourne, Richmond to be precise, but do you think Daniel Andrews is stopping them going into Hawthorn?"
Mr Tilley defended his support of Ms Berejiklian in shutting the border to Victorians last year.
"At the time the Victoria did not have a handle on cases," he said.
"They were having 700 cases a day and working off butcher's paper
"This is contained to Sydney, the nearest case in regional NSW is at Dungog."
In announcing the changes, Victorian Health Minister Martin Foley said his government feared the Sydney outbreak was far from over.
"We know (the changes) will have an impact on many border residents but we also know that an outbreak of the Delta variant on our doorstep will have an even more negative impact on our border communities," he said.
The Border Mail understands Mr Tilley was among MPs incensed with party leader Michael O'Brien's support for the harsher border rules.
But Victorian Nationals leader Peter Walsh said Mr Andrews didn't understand how border communities operated.
"You can't go across the river either way to have a meal and it is absolutely the nail in the coffin for the hospitality industry in those cross-border communities," he said.
"We need to bear in mind the cross-border communities are 300 to 400 kilometres away from Melbourne and 700 kilometres away from Sydney.
"They haven't had a COVID case for over 12 months now and why should they be made suffer because Daniel Andrews just wants to get in a competition with Sydney as to who is the toughest."
Business Wodonga chief executive Graham Jenkin said: "It's a slap in the face for both Albury and Wodonga businesses and everyone else who lives in the border bubble."
Member for Indi Helen Haines feared Victorian border residents would be denied a further easing of restrictions in the state due to be announced next week.
"It would be untenable to be in a situation where Victorians outside the border bubble enjoy freedoms that those inside the bubble can't have," she said.
"For people in the border region, crossing that border to see families and friends, to support small business, is just part of daily life.
"These restrictions will make daily life even more difficult."