Regional Victoria to move to step three

Melbourne CBD set to transform into alfresco dining hub

Victorian restrictions eased overnight: curfew extended, social bubbles introduced

Victoria reported 42 new cases of coronavirus and no deaths on Tuesday, marking the state's first day in more than two months without a death due to COVID-19.

Public gatherings of up to 10 people will be allowed outdoors (friends!) and "household bubbles" with one other nominated household will be introduced.

Travel throughout regional Victoria will also be allowed, in time for families to visit loved ones or go on holiday over the school holidays.

Hospitality can reopen for mainly outdoor seated service as well as takeaway.

Those over 18 can only participate in non-contact sports. The next target for easing coronavirus restrictions in the state is an average daily case rate of 30 to 50 cases over a fortnight by 28 September. It is a very positive thing. "You can not be travelling to regional Victoria unless you absolutely need to", he said.

"Today shows that slowly and surely, we can - we will - drive this thing down".

Regional Victoria will take further steps out of COVID-19 restrictions as of this Thursday with a "ring of steel" to be placed around Melbourne to prevent residents from travelling into regional Victoria to help prevent any spread of the virus. People can exercise outside for two hours as well, instead of one.

Playgrounds and outdoor pools can reopen and outdoor religious gatherings of up to five people, can occur.

On October 26, subject to the cases and public health advice, Melbourne will move to the 'third step'.

Face coverings are mandatory and residents are still encouraged to only leave home for four essential reasons, however the five kilometre distance rule is no longer in place across regional Victoria.

Metropolitan Melbourne's 14-day daily case average is now 52.9, down from 54.4 yesterday.

Premier Andrews has also flagged a tough crackdown to keep regional Victoria COVID-free with the further easing of restrictions.

"'I'm not for a moment pretending that many wouldn't like that number to be much higher".

On Sunday the Victorian Government also announced over $1.1 billion in cash grants to support small and medium sized businesses that are most affected by coronavirus restrictions including $822 million as part of the third round of the Business Support Fund.

Ms Maxwell said she was concerned at the lack of checks on passengers to ensure they are travelling for valid reasons only during Melbourne's Stage 4 lockdown.

Hospitality businesses will also receive support with a dedicated $251 million Licenced Venue Fund and the waiver of liquor licence fees in 2021.

In Hume, there were 75 active cases from a total of 1631 cases recorded.

Member for Yan Yean Danielle Green said regional Victoria's numbers were good enough that another step could be taken as early as Wednesday.

"The trend is very much with us", Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews said on Tuesday.

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