By JULIUS DENNIS
The cost of the Mercure Hotel quarantine facility, now empty but on stand-by, is $18.4m.
It is providing a “quarantine bed capacity” in Alice Springs through to November 30, says a spokesperson from the Northern Territory Government.
The quarantine situation in Alice had been murky, especially in light of the doubling of the capacity at the Howard Springs Facility 1500 kilometres to the north.
As a quarantine hotel the Mercure, owned by the Aboriginal company Centrecorp, must only host guests from Covid hotspots, meaning that it will sit in standby, empty of guests, awaiting a situation.
The NT Government says that they are using a “scalable staffing model at the Alice Springs Quarantine Facility to ensure employees are available to respond to quarantine needs.
“It is essential that the Alice Springs Quarantine Facility is held in a state of readiness should it be required.”