Reopen, Recover, Rebuild: a plan to bring cafes, bars, restaurants and pubs back to life

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Today the Victorian Liberal Nationals announce a new commitment to give Victorian hospitality businesses a real chance of getting back on their feet.  

As a key part of our positive alternative roadmap to get our state back on track, the Victorian Liberal Nationals commit to introducing sensible, safe density limits for hospitality venues. 

Under the Victorian Liberal Nationals’ Reopen, Recover, Rebuild Plan, all hospitality venues will be permitted to operate under the density limits of 1 person per 4 square metres inside and 1 person per 2 square metres outside.

In addition, arbitrary patron caps will be lifted – enabling venues of all sizes to operate at viable levels.

These new measures will be introduced once Victoria reaches the key National Cabinet 70 per cent vaccination threshold, with facilities only available to doubled vaccinated patrons or those having a valid medical exemption.   

These arrangements mirror those outlined in the New South Wales roadmap and provide a genuine pathway for a COVID safe reopening of small business.

Furthermore, the Victorian Liberal Nationals’ plan will freeze all existing small business municipal businesses levies and block the introduction of additional fees for a period of four years, including charges for footpath and road occupation fees.

Under the Andrews Labor Government’s roadmap, hospitality and retail business are banned from having indoor patrons until early November at the earliest – four weeks away.

Instead of suffocating small business with endless restrictions, let’s back patrons and operators to do the right thing and reopen in a sensible, safe manner.

Comments attributable to Leader of the Opposition, Matthew Guy:

“After six devastating lockdowns, Victorian small businesses, the families they support and jobs they provide have been smashed.  

“The Andrews Government has put a safe reopening of small business in the too hard basket.

“Locking up small business for another month is not the way forward. We have a positive plan to reopen, recover and rebuild so we can get our businesses back sooner.”

Comment attributable to Shadow Minister for Gaming and Liquor Regulation, Steph Ryan:

“After 18 months of hell, our hospitality sector needs a hand up, not another slap in the face.

“For the past few weeks, Labor’s catastrophically low patron caps have squeezed the life from regional hospitality venues that are already on their knees.

“A return to safe, sensible density limits will give hospitality venues the confidence to plan ahead so they – and their staff – can hit the ground running as soon as they can open their doors.”

Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Small Business, Jobs & Employment, David Southwick:

“Small business don’t want handouts, just the opportunity to open their doors, welcome back patrons and get on with it.

“Labor’s strict patron caps and outdoors-only approach are setting small businesses up to fail. Victoria needs a new plan.

“If New South Wales can do it, why can’t we? Let’s give small business a real path forward and a real chance to rebuild.”

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