LOCAL Police now have increased powers to respond to the impact of COVID-19.
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From 26 March, people breaking social distancing and quarantine can be fined $1,000 on the spot, and businesses can be fined $5,000 for breaches.
Court Attendance Notices (CANs) can also be issued, which carry a maximum penalty of an $11,000 fine and/or jail time.
NSW Police stated individuals could also be jailed for up to six months under existing enforcement powers.
Police can take immediate action in response to suspected breaches of COVID-19 public health orders, including returning people back home or to their place of quarantine.
Police will also be ensuring that the closure of local public playgrounds, skateparks, national parks, camping and campgrounds and high-visiaton areas is upheld with locals encouraged to report any activities of concern.
Anyone who has information regarding people and/or businesses in contravention of a COVID-19-related ministerial direction is urged to contact Crime Stoppers at https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au or call 1800 333 000.
Information is treated in strict confidence.
Please do not report crime via NSW Police social media pages.
By Sandra MURRAY