Business NSW Central Coast has welcomed a relaxing of restrictions announced recently by Premier Gladys Berejiklian, saying the move will bode well for the region’s businesses as Christmas approaches.
From 1 December, hotels and restaurants will be allowed one person per two square metres and 50 people will be able to visit a home.
There will be no cap on the number of people allowed in small hospitality venues (up to 200 square metres), so long as they keep to the one person per two square metre rule, and up to 50 people will be allowed to gather in an outdoor space.
“Importantly, the Government has also repealed the Public Health order requiring employers to allow employees to work from home where it is reasonably practicable to do so,” Regional Director, Paula Martin, said.
“This has been the cause of great frustration from businesses of all sizes across the Central Coast.
“Business NSW has continually advocated to the Government for this regulation to change and I’m delighted that business can now properly plan and execute an integrated return to the office program for their employees, while ensuring a safe and compliant working environment.
“Changes to the number of people allowed in restaurants, cafes and hotels is also a great boost exactly one month before Christmas – hopefully it means greater trading opportunities, extended hours and more jobs.
“Any breach, no matter how small, deserves to be penalised as we cannot afford to get complacent, especially as we head into the peak period for the hospitality industry.
“These regulations were brought in to protect the community from the spread of COVID-19 and their relaxation reflects the way the NSW community has dealt with and responded to the health crisis.
Martin said the re-opening of the Queensland border to all NSW residents from December 1 was also great news for Central Coast business owners.
“It’s been a cause of great frustration that people have not been able to plan their Christmas holidays or know when they will see relatives again,” she said.
“It’s been especially difficult for business owners to plan ahead for what is traditionally their peak period, and as a result, they’ve been unable to hire additional staff and extend working hours.
“We need to remain vigilant in dealing with COVID-19 and ensure appropriate tracing measures are in place at hospitality venues, but with a month to go before Christmas, businesses can now see the light at the end of the tunnel.”
Media releases, Nov 24 and 25
Business NSW Central Coast