A PERMIT system to enter regional NSW will be introduced as the NSW Government moves to tighten COVID restrictions to slow the spread of the Delta virus.
The announcement came as NSW recorded 466 new locally acquired cases of COVID-19 in the 24 hours to 8pm last night.
Of these locally acquired cases, 121 are linked to a known case or cluster - 101 are household contacts and 20 are close contacts - and the source of infection for 345 cases is under investigation.
Seventy-six cases were in isolation throughout their infectious period and 19 were in isolation for part of their infectious period. Sixty-eight cases were infectious in the community and the isolation status of 303 remains under investigation.
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There is growing concern over the Dubbo and Walgett cluster which has now grown to 42 with more exposure sites added to the list.
COVID was detected in sewage in Broken Hill and Ballina but there were no new reports of COVID being found in sewage in Bathurst following a detection on Friday.
As the government moves to introduce a raft of new COVID measures, including increased fines for breaches, Premier Gladys Berejiklian said that a permit system to enter regional NSW would come into effect from 12.01am, Saturday, August 21.
Under the system, any person who wishes to travel to regional NSW for one of the following reasons must have a permit which will be made available on Service NSW:
- Authorised workers from LGAs of concern.
- Inspecting real estate. Any person inspecting real estate in the regions must now genuinely need a home to live in (no investment properties).
- Travelling to your second home. This is now only allowed if you are using the home for work accommodation or if the home requires urgent maintenance and repairs (if so, only one person may travel there).
The new fines for breaches, to come into effect from 12.01am on Monday, August 16, include:
- $5000 on-the-spot fine for breaching self-isolation rules.
- $5000 on-the-spot fine for lying on a permit (already a criminal offence).
- $5000 on-the-spot fine for lying to a contact tracer (already a criminal offence).
- $3000 on-the-spot fine for breaching the two person outdoor exercise/recreation rule.
- $3000 on-the-spot fine for breaching rules around entry into regional NSW for authorised work, inspecting real estate and travelling to your second home.
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