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Update

Last updated: 11 August, 2020 03:58 pm

As this is an emerging situation, the following information is accurate at the time of publication and may change without further notice.

This page has been established to provide relevant information regarding COVID-19 (Coronavirus) for the Shire of Esperance Community.

The Shire of Esperance is committed to the health, wellbeing and safety of our staff and community. COVID-19 is a growing concern so we are following the advice of the Australian and WA State Government and Western Australia Department of Health to ensure the safety and well-being of our staff and community.

It’s important we all continue to look out for and support each other and continue to keep our community safe.

Staying Informed
The best place to stay informed on COVID-19 pandemic, including updates, alerts and resources, is to visit the Australian Government's Department of Health and the Healthy WA website.
If you are concerned about COVID-19, call the Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080 for advice. The line operates 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

For the latest updates, directive and decisions around the WA Roadmap, community, travel and business and industry advise please visit wa.gov.au.

Disclaimer — read before continuing

The information contained on this site is provided in good faith. It is to the best of our knowledge, reliable and accurate at the time of publication. The reader is solely responsible for assessing the veracity, usefulness and application of this information as it applies to them. 

FAQs

What is the Shire doing in response to the situation?

The Shire is responding according to the Australian and Western Australian Government’s direction.

The Shire has activated our Emergency Plan and our Business Continuity Plan so we can continue to deliver key services. Over the coming weeks and months, we will continue to modify our services and introduce other necessary measures to help keep the community safe.

What changes are being made to Shire of Esperance services and facilities?

The Shire of Esperance is operating with COVID Safe Plans in place. Physical distancing, good hygiene and the 2 square metre rule applies in all facilities.

Facilities OPEN:
Shire Administration Building, Windich Street
Esperance Visitor Centre
Esperance Home Care
Esperance Public Library
Esperance Airport
Wylie Bay Waste Facility
Shire Depot and Pound, Brazier Street
Bay of Isles Leisure Centre
Esperance Civic Centre
Esperance Volunteer Resource Centre

Facilities CLOSED till further notice:
Esperance Museum

Information for Travellers

Returning to WA from international travel

If you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident arriving back in Australia, you’ll be subject to the Australian Government’s mandatory quarantine period of 14 days at your first Australian destination.

You will be provided with suitable accommodation to stay in during this period.

However, you will not be permitted to travel domestically (including to your home) or continue on any domestic connections until you have completed the 14 day mandatory quarantine period.

For more information visit the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Smart Traveller.

Returning to WA from domestic travel

If you are a Western Australian wishing to return home from domestic travel, before travelling, you will need to apply for an exemption to enter the State.

You can apply for an exemption to enter WA by applying for a G2G PASS.

If your application is accepted, you will need to self-isolate for 14 days once back in Western Australia. Authorised officers will tell you where and how to self-isolate.

If you have returned from domestic travel and are returning via a flight to a regional area, you may be directed to commence mandatory quarantine in Perth for 14 days, prior to returning to your regional destination.

You need to comply with any other terms and conditions they impose.

If you are not an exempt traveller, you may commit an offence and be directed to leave Western Australia immediately, at your own expense.

It is highly recommended that you read the information on travel restrictions to determine if you meet the exempt traveller criteria.

Information from the WA State Government

WA State Inter-Regional Travel Restrictions

From Friday, 5 June 2020, most regional travel restrictions have been removed.

Travel is now permitted throughout all regions within WA, except for entry into remote Aboriginal communities.

Western Australians are encouraged to ‘Wander out Yonder' and take a different kind of holiday, enjoy a staycation in Perth or travel to new places, and seek out new experiences across the State.

For up to date information on travel and transport in WA, please visit the WA Government website.

WA State Border Closure

Strict border controls are in place to limit the spread of COVID-19.

You cannot enter WA unless you are an exempt traveller. If you meet the criteria outlined in the Quarantine (Closing the Border) Directions, you may apply for an exemption via G2G PASS.

All people entering WA are asked to bring their own masks. This includes essential workers with an exemption to enter WA. If travelling for work, your employer should provide masks. However, it is your responsibility to ensure you have and wear a mask when working in WA.

For all information on entering WA visit the WA Government website. This is acurate and timely information.

Updated: 5 August 2020

Gathering Restrictions

Due to the world-leading response to COVID in WA, Phase 4 started on Saturday, 27 June (11.59pm Friday, 26 June) and has resulted in further easing of restrictions, including:

  • all existing gathering limits and the 100/300 rule removed 
  • gathering limits now only determined by WA's reduced 2 square metre rule 
  • the 2 square metre rule will only include staff at venues that hold more than 500 patrons 
  • removal of seated service requirements at food businesses and licensed premises 
  • no requirement to maintain patron register at food businesses and licensed premises 
  • alcohol can be served as part of unseated service arrangements 
  • all events permitted except for large scale, multi-stage music festivals 
  • unseated performances permitted at venues such as concert halls, live music venues, bars, pubs and nightclubs 
  • gyms operating unstaffed, but regular cleaning must be maintained 
  • the casino gaming floor reopening under agreed temporary restrictions. 

 

For WA's major sport and entertainment venues, a 50 per cent capacity rule will apply. Therefore, under Phase 4, the temporary capacity of Optus Stadium will be 30,633 for sport events (35,000 for concerts), HBF Park can hold 10,150 (16,500 for concerts) and RAC Arena can hold 7150 (8250 for concerts). 

Western Australians must continue to keep up physical distancing where possible and good personal hygiene to better protect themselves and the general health of our community. 

WA businesses will be expected to ensure their COVID Safety Plans are updated and continue to be implemented. 

More Information

For more information on Phase 4 easing of restrictions and what they mean for community and business, please read our frequently asked questions.

Advice for business

Businesses across Western Australia need to comply with conditions outlined in the COVID Safety Guidelines and prepare a COVID Safety Plan before they reopen, to protect staff and customers.

Return to work

Western Australians are encouraged to return to work, unless they are unwell or vulnerable.

Regional travel

Travel is now permitted throughout WA, except for entry into remote Aboriginal communities:

Travel exemptions are still required to enter WA.

Camping and recreational activities

Campgrounds within national parks, reserves and State forest are open. You can camp at these sites and caravan parks. Attractions such as Monkey Mia, Barna Mia and the Tree Top Walk have reopened. 

Visiting residents in aged care

While family members can visit residents in aged care, some additional restrictions remain in place to protect vulnerable residents.

You should not visit if you have:

  • returned from overseas in the last 14 days
  • been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 in the last 14 days
  • a fever or symptoms of acute respiratory infection (e.g. cough, sore throat, runny nose, shortness of breath)
  • not had an up-to-date influenza vaccination.

 

View the Visitors to Residential Aged Care Facilities Directions (no. 3).

Prison social visits set to resume within weeks

Social visits to Western Australian prisons resumed on Saturday, 27 June.

The face-to-face visits resumed in line with health advice, including:

  • physical distancing
  • hygiene practices
  • individual assessments of visitors before they enter the prison, including taking their temperature.

General security measures have been tightened and tough new penalties have also been introduced for visitors trying to bring in contraband, such as drugs.

Custodial gymnasiums and sporting ovals have already reopened, and religious services have already resumed.

For more information see the Warning for prison visitors ahead of visits resuming this Saturday media statement.

WA remains in a State of Emergency, and various restrictions are enforceable by fines of up to $50,000 for individuals and $250,000 for businesses. Police officers also have the power to issue $1000 on-the-spot fines.

Physical Distancing and Hygiene

Every Western Australian needs to play their part to help stop the spread of COVID-19. This means following good hygiene habits and physical distancing.

  • Stay home if you're sick. Do not go to work or school.
  • Keep 1.5 metres away from others.
  • Don't make unnecessary physical contact with others. Avoid physical greetings, such as handshakes, hugs and kisses.
  • Use tap and pay instead of cash.
  • Wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds with soap and water or an alcohol-based sanitiser.
  • Cover your mouth and nose when you cough or sneeze. Use a flexed elbow or a tissue; if you use a tissue, dispose of it immediately and appropriately.

For more information see Australian Government advice for physical distancing.

WA remains in a State of Emergency, and various restrictions are enforceable by fines of up to $50,000 for individuals and $250,000 for businesses. Police officers also have the power to issue $1000 on-the-spot fines.

What support is available for the local community?

At the 28 April, 2020 Ordinary Council Meeting The Esperance Shire Council resolved to adopt a range of community and business relief initiatives to help with the COVID-19 recovery effort. The measures taken on by Council include:

  • 1. Adopt the COVID-19 Financial Hardship Policy.
  • 2. Remove outstanding rates penalty interest from 1 April till 30 June 2020.
  • 3. Waive commercial lease fees and traders permits for 6 months from 1 April 2020 for lessees who apply to the Shire and who meet the JobKeeper criteria as outlined by the Federal Government.
  • 4. Waive community lease fees for 6 months for lessees who apply to the Shire and can demonstrate that they have been significantly impacted by the effects of COVID-19.
  • 5. Waive community fees and charges for 6 months from 1 April 2020 to those groups who apply to the Shire and can demonstrate that they have been significantly impacted by the effects of COVID-19.
  • 6. Relax the requirement on Policy COR 007: Procurement for 6 months to require one written quote when there is only one local supplier for purchases under $75,000.
  • 7. Amend the Policy COR 007: Procurement to increase the tender threshold to $250,000 in line with recently amended Local Government (Functions and General) Regulations. 8. Conduct a one off residential bulk verge waste collection.
  • 9. Request the CEO prepare the draft 2020/2021 budget with a 0% rates and fees increase.
  • 10. Request the CEO develop a COVID-19 Recovery Plan for the Esperance community in consultation with the Esperance Incident Support Group.

Further details around each item will be available on the Shire website.
 


  • Lifeline – 13 11 14
  • Kids Helpline – 1800 55 1800
  • Beyondblue – 1300 22 4636
Assistance with paying your rates

Property owners having difficulty paying their rates are encouraged to contact the Shire Rates Officers on (08) 9071 0657 to discuss payment arrangements.

These can be paid in weekly, fortnightly or monthly instalments and are set up using a direct debit system.

What support is available to the Business Community?

The Australian Federal Government and Western Australian Government have announced measures to support small business during this challenging time.

For details on these measures please visit the Small Business Development Corporation website.

Food Businesses

A priority of the Shire of Esperance is to ensure that safe food is sold from local businesses. The Environmental Health Officers monitors all food business and has visited businesses recently offering suggestions to create a safer workplace in this current environment. A new Food Safety Tips for Take Away and Food Delivery information flyer has been developed to help during this time.

Accommodation providers

We will have visitors to the region who will need to self-isolate in accordance with government protocols. These people will need support and care. Should your business be in the situation of accommodating these guests, the WA Department of Health has issued an advisory flyer to assist in managing the matter.

What can I do to support my community?

At this time we are strongly recommending people to reconsider all non-essential travel.
If you don’t need to be out and about, please stay at home.
If you are away from home please adhere to the social distancing rules.

It’s important we all continue to look out for each other. Check in on others and reach out to those most at risk: neighbours living alone, the elderly and people with pre-existing medical conditions. Confirm their telephone number so you can contact them during periods of isolation. They may also need your help to replenish essential items and fill prescriptions for essential medicines.

Small business needs your business

Small businesses across Western Australia are the lifeblood of our communities, and right now they need your business to keep them going during this difficult time.

Look local

Look for shops that are still open in your local area, and consider how you can change your shopping habits to help them out. For example, could you do your regular shopping with a small business? Take a look around your neighbourhood you may just find your new favourite local shop, café or grocery store.

Dine in, order in or take away a meal

Some cafés, restaurants and pubs are open for limited dine-in services. Call ahead to make a booking, as there are limits to how many people can be in cafés and restaurants at a time. Alternatively, continue to support those still offering takeaway foods or delivery services. Check with your favourite restaurant, café or pub to see what they might have available, and order a great night in.

Ask “Do you do deliver?”

A number of businesses are now offering delivery or pick-up services. If you are looking to buy something from a small business, contact them to see if they can bring it to you, or offer a contactless pick-up or drop-off. And remember to keep 1.5m from other people where it is practical.

Try exercising online, or in small groups

Many gyms, yoga and dance studios are offering online video sessions. Contact your local studio or gym to see what they may be offering. Outdoor and indoor fitness classes following the 100/300 rule are permitted. For more details, see current restrictions.

Get creative

Many of us have more time on our hands, and it could be a time to pick up a new hobby or get working on a creative project. There may be local craft suppliers that can help you get started and give you the inspiration to get going. Some online stores may be closer than you think.

Keep an eye out for the arts

A number of artists and musicians are using creative ways to bring their art to you, such as through online concerts and gallery showings, as well as new collaborations with other businesses. Look out for ways that you might be able to buy tickets to an online show, purchase their merchandise or pick up a new work to help support the arts industry. 

Car or bike due for a tune-up?

For many of us that are working from home, it may be an ideal time to get your car serviced. Some local mechanics and service centres are offering to pick up and drop off your car and will wipe down the key surfaces before they return it to you. If you don’t have a car, consider if it is time to get your bicycle serviced to keep it in top condition.

Call in the trades

As we are spending more time at home, you may have noticed that there is more that needs to be done around the house. It is still possible to get a plumber, carpenter, handyman or other tradie to do jobs around your house, just make sure that you adhere to the physical distancing rules. They will be thankful for your business.

Catch up with a good book, puzzle or game

Now might be the ideal time to make it through that book that you’ve always wanted to read, pick up a puzzle or get some new board games to help the hours inside pass quicker. You may even get a new recommendation for a book or game that becomes your new favourite.

Time to hit the road

Take this time to explore WA, booking local accommodation and supporting our local and regional small businesses. If you are still unable to attend the tours or other activities you had booked, do those operators a favour and postpone rather than cancel your booking. A number of small businesses will be able to hold your payments as a credit to book at a later time.

Tech support

If you are now working from home and having computer troubles, your nearest technical support for your computer may be closer than you think. Look local and see if there is a small computer shop or technician that may be able to help fix your issues fast.

Haircuts and beauty services are OK

Hairdressers, barbers and beauty services are operating, provided they maintain 2 square metres between clients and keep personal contact to a minimum. Be aware that some salons may require you to make a booking, so best to give them a call before you visit their shop.

Show your support on social media

Another way you can help local businesses is to follow, like and share their Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or other social media posts. This helps let others know that they are still operating, and you just might come across some great offers or discover new products. Best of all, it doesn’t cost you a thing!

Are Council Meetings still proceeding?

The Shire of Esperance is committed to delivering for our community during these unprecedented times.

Ordinary Council Meetings will be held in the Council Chambers and in accordance with the Shires COVID Safety Plan and social distancing protocols, public seating is limited.
If you have a question to ask Council, regarding anything in this months agenda, you can email your question and this will be asked on your behalf. Please email your question before 2pm, Tuesday 23 June, to shire@esperance.wa.gov.au Attention: CEO - Question for Council Agendas for the meetings are available on the Shire’s website.

Should I see a doctor for a non-coronavirus issue or put it off?

If you are unwell, please call your doctor. Each clinic will have protocols in place and can advise you.

Stay Informed - COVID-19 information

The best place to stay informed on COVID-19, including updates, alerts and resources, is to visit the Department of Health website and the Healthy WA Website.

If you are concerned about COVID-19, you can call the WA COVID-19 Hotline on 132 68 43 or the national Coronavirus Health Information Line on 1800 020 080 for advice. 

How do I contact the Shire of Esperance?

You can contact the Shire Administration via: