The City of Ballarat's libraries will reopen from Tuesday morning, but time limits and density caps will apply.
As part of eased restrictions in regional Victoria, libraries have been given the green light to let people back in - as well as traditional services like borrowing books, libraries serve several important community functions, like storytime for toddlers, a quiet study space for students, access to the internet for those who don't have it at home, and an opportunity to meet up socially for people who might not have other opportunities.
Council confirmed on Monday the Ballarat, Sebastopol, and Wendouree libraries will reopen, with a maximum of 20 people allowed inside at once, as well as required staff.
A spokesperson for the City of Ballarat said in a statement social distancing of one person per four square metres must be maintained, everyone must wear face masks, and anyone visiting for 15 minutes or more must be registered for contact tracing.
The length of visits will be limited to no more than one hour, and library patrons will be encouraged to utilise the contact free self-checkout 'click and collect' for borrowing library resources.
Computer use is by booking only and is restricted to 45-minute sessions.
A limited Home Library Service will continue to be provided, but face-to-face library programs and services remain suspended until further notice, they added.
The Library Outreach Service also remains closed.
Sunday's announcement from the state government also included indoor pools in regional areas opening for people aged under 18 years, with a limit of 20 people in the pool, and one parent or guardian allowed inside - a statement on the Ballarat Aquatic and Lifestyle Centre website notes the changes to restrictions are being "worked through".
Other council facilities, including the Art Gallery of Ballarat, Civic Hall, Her Majesty's Theatre, and the Eureka Centre, remain closed for now. Many other council services, including the animal shelter, maternal and child health and immunisations, and the Gillies Street transfer station, remain open.
Council's customer information centre will stay closed to the public, but officers will be available through 5320 5500.
Remember to always maintain good hand hygiene, wear a mask when in public, and keep a 1.5 metre distance from others at all times.
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Victoria Police are enforcing restrictions, and penalties apply.
Anyone with the slightest symptoms is urged to get a test immediately, and must self-isolate until results come back - book online at bchc.org.au or phone 4311 1571 to make an appointment.
For more information, visit the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services website, or phone the hotline on 1800 675 398 for advice if you are displaying symptoms.