Illawarra Newsroom

Harp Hotel fined for public health breach


Wollongong's Harp Hotel has been issued a $5000 fine over alleged breaches of the Public Health Order.

Licensing police from Wollongong Police District attended the Corrimal Street venue as part of Operation Pariac, a high-visibility regional police operation targeting licensed venues around 11.30pm on Friday October 2.

Police allege that large groups of people were seen to be congregating, hugging and dancing and that no COVID safety marshals were observed to be enforcing physical distancing requirements or the venue’s COVID safety plan.

Following inquiries, the venue was issued with a $5000 fine for failing to comply with requirements of a Public Health Order – COVID-19.

The maximum penalty for contravening a Public Health Order is a fine of up to $11,000 and/or six months imprisonment.

The standard penalty is a fine by way of an on-the-spot Penalty Infringement Notice (PIN) – $1000 for individuals and $5000 for businesses.

Wollongong Police District Commander, Superintendent Evan Quarmby said police will continue to work with businesses in relation to their COVID-19 safety plans and provide advice and guidance.

"The safety of the community is paramount, and we will continue to take action against those businesses that choose to ignore ministerial directions," Supt Quarmby said.

"When we launched Operation Summer Safe last month, we made it clear to the community that during the warmer months it will not be business as usual.

"We have been through the education and engagement phase, and we will not hesitate to move into enforcement for those who leave us with no alternative.

"We have been working closely with our partner agencies and local businesses to make sure everyone is on the same page when it comes to the health and safety of our community," Supt Quarmby said.

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