VICTORIA Police are continuing to ensure people are abiding by the restrictions of the Chief Health Officer across the region - especially in tourist hot spots.
Superintendent Jenny Wilson said police were continuing to conduct proactive Operation Sentinel patrols across the police service area.
Superintendent Wilson said while overall the community had abided by social distancing and isolation requirements during the last few months, recently police, along with the community, were concerned about the number of people visiting tourist towns such as Daylesford and Hepburn.
With concerns about a rise in community transition in Melbourne and the school holidays set to begin soon, police are ensuring they have a visible presence in the areas that are attracting crowds across the region.
"We are tasking members to these areas where we identify, or where the community contact us and identify, that there are people breaching the restrictions," Superintendent Wilson said.
Superintendent Wilson said while the region has not seen the spike in cases that Melbourne has, it should serve as a reminder that the virus is still in the Victorian community and about what could happen.
While it is a balancing act between public health and reinvigorating the economy, particularly in small towns such as across the region, she said health needed to come first so the rest could follow.
At the weekend, the state government extended the state of emergency until July 19 following a spike in coronavirus cases.
Police minister Lisa Neville announced that police enforcement would also be strengthened, with police once again able to issue on the spot fines.
While police will continue to be out and about enforcing these latest restrictions - including that social distancing is maintained and that no more than five people can visit a home and no more than 10 people congregate outdoors - Superintendent Wilson said people needed to take responsibility for their own actions.
I'm happy to hold people accountable if they're breaking the rules but what I really don't want to see is that we have to get to that point.Superintendent Jenny Wilson
"I'm happy to hold people accountable if they're breaking the rules but what I really don't want to see is that we have to get to that point," she said.
"If everyone commits to looking after each other, and their communities, then we shouldn't have to get to a state where we are issuing tickets."
You might also like: Police assistance line receives massive amount of calls due to COVID-19 breaches
Superintendent Wilson encouraged families to speak with children and younger people about restrictions and personal hygiene, so that they understand the importance.
She urged people who come across blatant breaches of restrictions to call the Police Assistance Line immediately, so police would be informed and could respond accordingly.
An individual can receive a fine of up to $1652 for breaching restrictions, while a business can receive up to a $9913 fine.
Under the state of emergency, people who fail to comply can be taken to court where they can receive a fine of up to $20,000. The fine could cost up to $100,000 for a business.
If you are seeing this message you are a loyal digital subscriber to The Courier, as we made this story available only to subscribers. Thank you very much for your support and allowing us to continue telling Ballarat's story. We appreciate your support of journalism in our great city.