A hotel in Sydney has been hit with a $10 000 fine by the NSW Liquor and Gaming Authority for breaches of COVID-19 regulations.
The Garry Owen Hotel in Rozelle, in the inner-west part of the city, had “a complete disregard for mandated COVID safety measures”, the authority said.
Among the transgression cited by inspectors were failing to enforce the required physical distancing, not requiring patrons to be seated as per the regulations, and not enforcing sign-in registration.
Blatant non-compliance, says authority
“This would probably be the most blatant non-compliance we’ve seen with the public health orders so far,” said Dimitri Argeres, the Director of Compliance for the NSW Liquor and Gaming Authority.
When they visited the premises, inspectors also found that the Garry Owen only had three staff managing a full venue. It was also determined that the hotel was not registered as COVID-safe and it did not have an updated safety plan.
Several other NSW venues were also fined for breaches of COVID-19 regulations this week. They are: the Riverview Hotel in Balmain, the Dry Dock Hotel in Balmain, The Padstow Park Hotel and Bowling Club in Padstow, the Marrickville Ritz, the Royal Hotel Randwick, and Yai Thai restaurant in Gosford.
Hotel has appointed a safety marshal
ABC News reports that the Garry Owen Hotel has subsequently appointed a COVID-19 safety marshal to ensure the regulations are followed.
“It’s completely different; it’s completely safe and they (patrons) will notice the changes we’ve enforced when they come in,” the ABC quotes the hotel’s safety marshal, Vanessa Hardin, as saying.
“We have COVID officers day and night [and] new management plans that have been enforced.”
Have been previous large fines in Sydney
In July, NSW Liquor and Gaming imposed a fine of $5 500 on the Golden Sheaf Hotel, a popular venue in the suburb of Double Bay.
Authorities said they were concerned that around 250 customers were allowed to queue on the pavement outside the venue without any social distancing one evening.
“We need to send a clear message to this business and others that if you are not doing the right thing you will be held to account, and we will escalate our enforcement actions for those who put the public at risk,” Argeres said at the time.