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lockdown-extended-1

Lockdown eased

Lockdown eased

Regional Victoria slightly different restrictions

James Merlio has announced Melbourne will remain in lockdown for another seven days after six new locally acquired cases were detected. The state's outbreak is currently 60. There are over 350 exposure sites.

The extension comes as the Kappa variant is proving more infectious than previous strains.

The best way to stop the virus is to get vaccinated. Only two percent of the population is vaccination.

Strong words from Acting Premier, James Merlino today who said, people will die if they do not get the vaccine.

There are still only FIVE reasons to leave home in Metro Melbourne.

People from Melbourne cannot travel to the regions over the long weekend.

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Regional Victoirans will have restrictions eased at 11:59pm tomorrow night. Bearing in mind, residents can only travel to Melbourne for a permitted reason.

- Outdoor gathering limits can occur with up to 10 people. Infants under 12 months are not included in that cap.

- Food and hospitality will be open for seated service only. There's a 50 person cap per venue, subject to density requirements of one per 4 square metres.

- Retail can open

- Beauty practioners can reopen and tattooing can resume for services where masks can remain on.

- Religious gatherings and ceremonies are permitted for 50 people plus one faith leader.

- The limit for weddings will be 10 people and for funerals, 50 mourners.

- Junior outdoor community sport will return and adults will be able to resume training outdoors.

- Outdoor pools, including swimming classes can operate with a limit of 50 people with a density quota of one per 4 square metres.

- Libraries and toy libraries can open with a cap of 50 people subject to density requirements.

- Outdoor seated entertainment, seated and unseated will have a patron cap of 50 people or 50 per cent of the venue's seating capacity, whichever is lower.

More support for Victoiran businesses:

The Victorian Government will double existing support payments for businesses affected by the extension of the circuit-breaker restrictions.

Victorians are joining together and keeping their doors closed to safeguard the community and the economy in the long run – we appreciate the efforts and sacrifices being made across the state and recognise the real cost of this action for businesses.

Building on the $250.7 million support package announced last Sunday, a new allocation of up to $209.3 million will flow to small and medium-sized businesses, taking the total support package to $460 million.

Up to 90,000 businesses will benefit from the original support. About 70,000 of these businesses located in metropolitan Melbourne will be affected by the extension of restrictions beyond Thursday 3 June and will be eligible for the new support.

Business Costs Assistance Program grants of $2,500 for eligible businesses directly affected by the industry restrictions, including restaurants and cafes, event suppliers, accommodation providers and non-essential retailers, will be doubled to $5,000 for eligible businesses in metropolitan Melbourne.

Regional businesses that are unable to open due to ongoing restrictions, such as nightclubs and amusement parks, will also be eligible for the extension payment. Metropolitan businesses that will have restrictions eased from Friday will not be eligible for the extension payment.

Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund grants of $3,500 for businesses holding an eligible liquor licence and food certificate will be doubled to $7,000 for eligible businesses in metropolitan Melbourne.

Applications are scheduled to open on Thursday 3 June 2021 – including for regional businesses applying under the original package – and will be open until 11.59pm on Thursday, 24 June 2021. Businesses will only need to fill one application.

The extra allocations take the support for the Business Costs Assistance Program to $370 million and the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund to $70 million. Details on the $20 million Events Support Package for operators in the events industry who have incurred losses due to restrictions will be provided shortly.

The Victorian Government has renewed its request for JobKeeper support for workers from the Commonwealth Government.

Businesses can register their interest in the Business Costs Assistance Program at business.vic.gov.au and will be notified when applications open. Businesses eligible for the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund payment will be emailed directly by Business Victoria with a link to their grant application form.

Acting Premier James Merlino said, “Our decisions are guided by the advice of the Chief Health Officer to protect the health and wellbeing of Victorians – as they have been throughout the pandemic.”

“This is hard for everyone and this extra support means businesses can be in a position to recover strongly once their doors reopen.”

Tim Pallas said, "We are standing with Victorian businesses and workers – providing them with the support they need to get through this challenging time.”

Minister for Industry Support and Recovery Martin Pakula said, “Industry and business have been magnificent contributors to our efforts to combat this virus and they continue to play a leading role.”

Minister for Small Business Jaala Pulford said, “We know businesses that are currently closed will be counting the days until they can re-open. The efforts of our small business community have been heroic, and we are proud to support them.”

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